The anchor and the dice stared in dismay at the beautiful, fresh, modern mermaid enthroned above her navel. Her round curves were still dripping with dry ink. The black of her outline made the green of the anchor and the dice fade even louder. The two began to cry. The shoulder blade tribal asked them why they were crying. They said they felt overshadowed by the new tattoo. That because of the siren no one will look at them anymore. "I who see the world only at the pool, what more can I say?" the tribal asked boredly.

(Translated by Elena Creţu / University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year I / Corrected by Silvia Petrescu, coordinator of the translations)

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 Ficţiuni Reale.

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