This is my job, I'm an elevator operator. I am retired but I don't want to leave. You might say it's not exactly space engineering, but I feel like that's my duty. I work in a children's hospital. If I manage to make someone smile during the day, a child with eyes deep in the back of their head or a mother who has withdrawn into herself, it means that I have made the world a better place. Today I dressed as a vampire. It's not my place to ask God why things happen the way they happen, I don't judge. I just push buttons and sometimes I go up, sometimes I go down.  

(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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