Self-portrait? I mean, I have to look in the mirror and observe myself? Should I look for the white hairs that came out after he left? See how the crease deepened above the nose? My grandmother had the same crease, my mother has one. I thought I hadn't inherited it, but it appeared to me later, when I started to frown rather than smile. It was as if a few new wrinkles were appearing around his eyes. I smile indulgently, arrange a rebellious strand, and the image of my bare finger, widowed by my wedding ring, strikes me again.

(Translated by Ana Spînu / 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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