Where have you been? I've been waiting for you all night. I stole the money from the poor box. You're joking, I sent you to work, not to steal. What do you care? I've brought money. You're a rascal, she shouts and crumbles the pile of money at her feet, hell's fire burning her soles. I put my arms around her shoulders and pull her to my chest. Her heart is like a bird in a cage. I kiss her eyelids; her hair I caress tenderly. She gives in, warm, like a cat purring in front of a fireplace. We're going to crumble all this money underneath us, she says. Outside, sirens echo. The bank's building is on fire.

(Translated by Cristina-Bianca Ion / 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 July 2021, the group has 6.800 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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