The first one usually catches me off guard. His strings wrap around my neck insidiouslyand my shoulders are burdened with an enormous weight. My pulsing fingers are dangling numb. I gasp for air. You see the second one coming from miles away, like a raging storm. He drags me by my messy hair into the house, he shuts the blinds and leaves me staring at the ever so dark ceiling. I lie in a vacuum where every living thing is bound to die. My life is at their mercy, changing back and forth between struggle and acceptance, anxiety and depression.

(Translated by Alin Sescu / 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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