I close my eyes and breathe gently. Tears mix with the blood running down my face. I feel the half-broken tooth wobbling in my mouth. His heavy breathing breaks near my left ear. I listen to my heartbeat and the rhythm soothes me. I don't even know when it stops. In my mind it all lasted a moment. He gets off me slowly. I look at him, staring intently. He's grinning. With one last shred of strength, I jab the keys into his right eye. He stops grinning. I hit him and lose myself in the night running.

(Translated by Cristina Ioana Bontea / 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 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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