The book dealer was a good man, he never complained about life being expensive as a pretense for not lowering the price, his words were few and his smiles were many. Old Isac smiled fully, with his eyes, his mouth, and his bony hands. You wouldn't have said he was Jewish if you hadn't known that, as a child, he ran away from his country, hidden in a chest filled with books and a violin. He might have been born a second time in that chest, that I don't know, but I do know that every evening, after he closed the shop down, he grabbed his violin and all the stories around him were imbued with the spirit of life.

(Translated by Ioana Diana Sandu / 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 April 2022, the group has 8,175 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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