When the pandemic started, I moved in at my grandma's, in the countryside. A sort of numbness, a sort of torpor: my kind of place. Days are for work and evenings for walks in the poplar grove in the backyard. Today, grandma was talking to our neighbour. Say, what's wrong with this girl. She won't talk to any boy, she sits all day in front of that box, and when she does go outside, it's only to those poplars in the backyard, they must've hypnotized her. I'll have Gicu cut them down for wood since winter's coming.

(Translated by Eleonora Manea / University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year II / Corrected by Professor Nadina Vişan)

Real Fiction is a collective project started in 2013 by Florin Piersic Jr. The concept of Real Fiction continued to exist as a Facebook group, after a volume of stories was published at Humanitas Publishing House. (In January 2021, the group has 3.000 members.) The authors write ultra-short stories, with the texts limited to 500 characters (in Romanian, so the length of the English translation might be a little different) - a flash-fiction exercise on a topic that changes almost daily. The group's coordinators are Florin Piersic Jr., Gabriel Molnar, and Luchian Abel. (Drawing by Adrian T. Roman)

*Versiunea în română a acestui text se poate citi aici, în rubrica Ficțiuni Reale.

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