I follow her around the house, seeing how she is vacuuming even the spiderwebs I always sublet to the spiders. I witness how she brings Ilinca to school and carries her backpack up to the classroom because it is heavy. I chase her even to the grocery store and I peek in the list where all the groceries are drawn, not written. The last time I felt her touch was when she placed the candle between my fingers. Now I am a ghost that speaks with the wall and goes through them. I watch her until she falls asleep, and then I sleep in my good dormition.

(Translated by Roberta Ana-Maria Gulerez / 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 August 2022, the group has 9,000 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 every few days. 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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