I bought everything. Cakes, pretzels, salted peanuts, vanilla ice cream, champagne, a bottle of red wine, Coke, and some flowers. I light three scented candles and wait. At 9 o'clock sharp I get into bed and turn on my laptop, very nervously. I have received hundreds of messages. I take a sip of wine, eat a cake, and then begin to reply to all the birthday wishes from my friends. I thank them and send them heart emojis. I drink champagne straight from the bottle. Towards morning, I lock them all in the box with keys and cry myself to sleep. Next year I will also buy some fruit.

(Translated by Valentina Mihai / 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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