You're such a handsome boy, aren't you? The smartest boy. Everything will be fine, sweetie. Trust me, I'll do my best to bring you back on track as soon as possible. God, you don't even recognize the fingerprint anymore. How could I have forgotten the baby bottle at home? We're nearly there, keep your eyes open. All four. Show your mother your pretty flash. Don't fall asleep, baby. Start the connection, look for a 5G network, update an app, give me a notification, just don't fall asleep, we're almost there. That's it, my love, we're home, take your food, yum-yum. Hush. Hush, my precious.

(Translated by Ecaterina Buşe / University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year II / 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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