What do you want to do on your birthday? Nothing, mom, leave me be. I don't want to do anything. Come on, dear, you're only once thir- Don't even say it. I am still twelve years old until next year when I'll be fourteen. Please accept it and don't say anything else. Sweetie, this is silly, it's just a stupid superstition. Really? Then how come that grandpa died on the 13th of November? Or that Roco only lived 13 years? They're just coincidences. Look, your sister was born on the 13th. Exactly. This number brings only misfortunes. Now leave me alone, we'll talk tomorrow.

(Translated by Andreea Zofotă / 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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