He received gifts from all the people, and his eyes gleamed naively as he pulled on the bows - he could not wait to see what was there, what his parents had brought him. The shame of her great-grandmother, raped by her boyar, clung to his skin like a tattoo. In the next, more fearful, he found the horror of his grandfather who shot with his eyes closed in the army. What did he receive from his mother? A glossy depression, to be worn in the evenings with a lump in his throat. And his father subtly gave him a card with the question that had hung him on to a beam - what's the point?

(Translated by Ioana Oacheșu / 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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