Since I've left, you spot me here and there in the women walking down the street. The familiar scent of perfume makes you turn your head. Your eyes water when you realise they look like me, but they're not me. You get home and sink your nose into my nightgown, which you've kept. You miss me. Your flesh trembles with longing, and you have no idea where they buried me. Maybe they burned me and scattered me in the woods as I asked. You've been searching around for me in warm bodies with wigs. You're tired. Me? I'm still within you, as I promised.

(Translated by Camelia Diaconu / University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year II / Corrected by prof. Eliana Ionoaia / 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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