I look in the mirror and I make the knot at the tie. I take off my napkin and I wipe my face and my neck. I am sweaty as a pig even if it is winter. I did not think that I would still have emotions after two failed marriages and a heart attack. There are people who admit that I am an incurable romantic, others who say that I am an ox. The truth is always in between. I climb down the stairs and I look at her. She is beautiful and cold as a chunk of ice. She endeavours to look at me fondly, but she cannot. I know she does this for fortune, and it is fine. I lost all my money.

(Translated by Teodora Stoian / 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 April 2021, the group has 5.600 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, Răzvan Penescu, 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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