Just you? I'm so glad you came, 'cus I panicked here all by myself. There were others, but they weren't patient enough to wait, I don't know where they went. Leave them gone; they'll find the way, there's no other escape. Come on up. Do you know how you are? I do. Can you do it further? I don't know, I'll see. Have you got the chips? I got two, isn't it enough? Oh, here, on the Styx, you haven't changed at all. The custom-house might be old, but the price is new. What, more? Yeah. What am I gonna do now, stay unpassed? You won't, but you must tell a story, 'cus now we do ticket stories, you give a story in exchange. Whose story? Yours. Is it ready?

(Translated by Alexandra Lica / 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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