I had thousands of names and thousands of appearances, sober clothes and colourful clothes, I was sad and cheerful, tall and short, talkative and quiet, I ate flower petals and drank water from puddles, I was a snitched on, sometimes expelled, but I was never forgotten. Captive in Leontina's mind, I watch her swing on the wooden seesaw and laugh. She is childish when she laughs, even though the years have passed for almost everyone. I could tell her that even imaginary friends are retiring, but I don't want to leave her alone.

(Translated by Carol Popa Zafiriadi / 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 March 2022, the group has 8,050 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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