He was 7 years old. His mom, a prostitute, had been working in Italy for 3 years. Nobody had wanted him. He was just a work accident. He was raised by his grandmother, a harsh and foul-mouthed woman. If it weren't for me, your mom would have taken you to the streets, that bitch, that slut. That fucking slut. All that he had from that fucking slut was a white t-shirt that was reeking of smoke and had a sour smell of vomit. He kept it under his pillow. The smell of his mom calmed him and brought sleep upon him. The joyful shark imprinted on it, faded by time and laundry detergent held a promise: Sea You Soon.

(Translated by Ioana Busuioc / 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 January 2022, the group has 7.830 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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