She was lying there, petite, covered with a blanket, tubes and medical probes hanging underneath. The windows of the ward for patients with septicemiawould sometimes break the medical devices'concerto with an echo of a tram.These trams were the only ones disturbing my liquid throbbing heart; others go and come where they need to. Not us. We stay. She, connected to the mechanical ventilator. I, on the chair, connected to her. And her little hand that is sporadically piercing through the Fentanyl, just to grab my finger. And I hold in my terror, as if it were nails and pitch and I caress her too. One can talk even with a little finger.

(Translated by Raluca Simion / University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year II / Corrected by prof. 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 March 2023, the group has 10,790 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, Luchian Abel, and Vlad Mușat. (Drawing by Adrian T. Roman)

Versiunea în română a acestui text se poate citi aici, în rubrica Ficțiuni Reale.

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