C'mon, princess, let the old lady read your future, she squawked. I don't want to, crone, I said. But you do, she laughed toothless, cause your wreaths are tied and I can untie them. Then she implies, c'mon, give me a penny, otherwise - then she got her skirts out of the way, enough to make visible three gourds tied on a rope to her waist - tonight I'll set the demons free to come and ask for money themselves. I, who read about spirits locked into gourds tied to wizards' waist, take out the money, asking myself if the witch knows anthropology, psychology or she just really is one hell of a witch.

(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 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 Ficțiuni Reale.

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