When mother put on lipstick. I thought she was the most beautiful woman on this earth. She didn't always wear it, but mostly she did. Because I felt she wanted to be. You know that green lipstick that turns red. It fascinated me. On my lips it was colorless and, trust me, I kept applying it every ten minutes. On my mother it was a warm softly red when she was well. I don't even know if it was the color of her lipstick or the reflection of her inner smile. When she was sad, the red on her lips was harsh. It didn't glow. She just cried.

(Translated by Alina-Dorina Nicolae / University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year I / Corrected by prof. dr. Nadina Vișan / Edited 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 November 2022, the group has 9,580 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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