When the ice on the lake broke, you rushed to save me. On my way home, I was freezing from the cold and from fear thinking about my dad. I will defend you, you promised. You told him that, actually, you fell into the water and I jumped to take you out. When mom found those cigarettes, you told her that I just confiscated them from you because I didn't want you to smoke. Recently you promised that we would party with my first salary. Now you are lying, limply, on this hospital bed. Promise me you will get better, grandpa. I'm waiting for that party, even if I just got into high school.

(Translated by Maria Cătălina Moisescu / 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 December 2022, the group has 9,880 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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