I want to tell you about this morning. He usually sat curled up around a bottle on the grass between the blocks, wrapped in a threadbare blanket he received as alms. His only possessions were a dirty tote bag full of papers and a story no one would stop to listen to. Despite the biting cold that was hungrily taking a bite out of November already, he was there day after day, like an old, broken clock you wouldn't have the heart to throw away. This morning, however, he vanished. All I could find there was a pair of torn boots, silent witnesses to his great escape.

(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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