He swallowed hard, thinking of the raspberry tea his grandmother used to make him. He squeezed the little bag between his fingers to satisfy her hunger for a moment and imagined she was powdering doughnuts and gobbling them all down. The darkness in which too many crowded together stung his eyes and prevented him from reaching the hot pipes. He remembered how his grandmother used to put a quince on the windowsill, which the moonbeams turned into the lamp that kept them company at night. And she waited for him to fall asleep with a story. Maybe she's still waiting for him.

(Translated by Anca Cristina Georgiana Mihai / 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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