General surgery, day 1. Ana and I enter the room with prof. X, we'll witness a real surgery. We're so excited, giggling and admiring ourselves in scrubs. The room is cold, X has already started. It's a gluteal abscess, he says, with his forearm sinking into a butt cheek. Every time he moves his hand, red waves of blood follow. He picks off something invisible deep in the cheek. Think I've reached the bone, he says, and I glide with a fading smile towards Ana, who collapses in a dignified silence on the tool table.

(Translated by Eleonora Manea / 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 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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