Why doesn't it come down? I want it to come down already, yelled Mr. Hoe in the lobby of the boarding house in Mamaia Sud, tapping his foot. But, kid, these poor people don't have an elevator, mommy consoled him, spitting, to ward off the evil eye, for her son was so damn smart. Then let that ugly guy carry me up the stairs, Hoe decided. The ugly guy didn't say no, but in the darkness between the floors he stole his beret. Stop right now, the hags hissed and jumped at the ugly man's neck, making him into a bloody mary. The story was told to me by a certain Caragian, a serious customer, so that I wouldn't be left without an elevator this year since it would be too bad for my hotel.

(Translated by Andreea Denisa Dinu / University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year II / 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 January 2023, the group has 10,220 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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