the old man stopped and measured each window with steamy eyes, all the way up. Nobody knew who he was, but after a while they got used to seeing him there every evening. If you got close enough, you could hear him whispering his litany: downstairs, the stained-glass hall, the living rooms, Dad's study and Mom's music room, in the back, the kitchen and the servants' pantries, on the first floor, the sleeping rooms, upstairs, the story loft and the eaves with the moody cats, above the linden tree and God's will. Then he'd wake up as if from a dream, take his longing and leave.

(Translated by Anca Maria Florea / 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 July 2022, the group has 8,750 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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