Where there's art there's a bit of madness. Let's do it, and agree to celebrate our painter friend's birthday. I told him to be all dressed up, like for an art opening. We all knew how sloppy he is. The poor fellow spent money on the most expensive clothes, trimmed his hair, the only thing he didn't give up was his beard, and as he was always being teased, the event we had prepared got him excited. In the evening around 6 o'clock he opened the door of the hall, dark, a voice said, turn on the light, and under the cruel neon lights, we, naked, applauded him.

(Translated by Lenuța Bejenaru / 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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