This place hasn't been cleaned for a long time. There's so much dust and cobwebs that the woman sneezes a lot. The man asks her: are you sure you can do this? Others have tried, but they've given up. Her gentle eyes give him hope. Let's start in this corner. A mouse runs past her shoes; she doesn't flinch. The outdated books, the furniture with missing legs, the piano with broken strings, all slowly disappear. She moves confidently until she finds the baby. Like any good therapist, she brings him out into the light.

(Translated by Oana Irina Oprea / 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 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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