He looked in astonishment as life passed livelier and livelier around him. He wanted to close his eyelids, but he was bewildered to discover he no longer had eyelids, so an abysmal fright shook the very foundation of his being. I'm alive, he screamed at the top of his lungs, but the words remained imprisoned in the thought's womb, unable to be born. With a silent wince, he wanted to rise to his feet, but he no longer had feet and his flesh turned to glass. Realization dawned on him. The lightning-Death turned him into an hourglass, half heaven, half hell. All his ancestors were flowing through him, grain by grain.

(Translated by Andra Daiana Păuna / 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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