A photo album. A baby lying on her tummy, head raised bravely. The little girl with short hair and bangs, skinny, toothless, smiling crookedly in the sun. The teenage girl with deep eyes, sparkling with dreams. The young girl conquering them. The successful woman, strong, beautiful and smiling. A wife, a mother. A friend, human among humans. An orphan. An incomplete story. The soul doesn't allow itself to be photographed, the wounds, they don't, the questions, the mistakes, the longing, they do not. The exhaustion. Maybe a needle stuck in the middle of the body in the picture, like a butterfly in an insectarium, would stop her from falling.

(Translated by Adrian-George Ilinca / 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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