When grandpa left among the righteous at six feet underground, I also lost my favourite chess partner. 1931-1931 remained the score, the year on the left of the cross, a life and half's draw. After three days I put a board on his grave and moved the white pawn. The black pawn mirrored the move the next day, then my horse jumped the fence. I moved one piece a day, until we each had three left. He gave me checkmate when I did it for 40 days. I left the cemetery and greeted the bored gravedigger.

(Translated by Andreea-Alexandra Șerbănescu / 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 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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