The father's hand hits the little boy's cheek, drawing with the wrinkles of the palm a macramé on the chubby cheeks. When the little boy becomes a man, the wrinkles turn into ditches of alcohol and violence. The brutality plants into memories, and the foresight of the same behaviour can be seen from infancy. Father-Son-Father. What did you bring me daddy? A slap over the head, if you don't behave. Between giving and receiving there is only a step. A caress. Gentleness grows in the memories of a protective palm. Hold my hand, son.

(Translated by Nina Tufă / 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 September 2021, the group has 7.150 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 every few days. 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 Ficțiuni Reale.

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