Do you smoke? Yes. Because...? Because of ciggarettes. No, I mean why do you smoke? \'Cuz I'm stupid. Really. So you know they're carcinogenic, and the risk of cancer remains even if you quit, but at least it won't keep going up. Your cardiovascular system, which is the reason you came to see me, will need five years so undo the damage. Only then the inner layer of the blood vessels, called the endothelium, will flush out the smoke and will be able to properly respond to stimuli, to dilate according to the effort exerted, to not randomly get blood clots. Do you understand? Mhm.
(Translated by Bianca-Maria Ciucașu / 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 September 2022, the group has 9,250 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.