I had constant pains. I got used to them. They became natural, and they were a part of my being. They clung to my body like vines. I began to hear the rustle of my soul raven's wings flying in disarray and singing my requiem, until one day when I fought back by spitting dark and heavy words, biting and tearing at that agony to break free. The controlled state of unconsciousness calmed me. The thread broke, and time rested at its zero point. Where is the beginning? How is the end? Welcome back, the surgeon said.

(Translated by Cristina Stan / 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 February 2022, the group has 7,950 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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