When I was young, I was so thin, I used to tie stones to my feet so the wind would not take me away. Why is that? I was put in charge of the fire. Boy, did I chase after the sun, entered the volcano and laid in wait for the lightning to strike. I ran back and forth. I waited hand and foot on them: cook, make a stake, freeze. Savages, who could blame them? One day, I was in a hurry and tripped. The rock on my feet crashed into each other and made fire. That's it. I was the fire master. They drew me on the walls and honored me. I was a man. A Neanderthal.

(Translated by Iulia-Teodora Urea / 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 May 2021, the group has 6.400 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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