The beatings he got from his dad hurt him. It had also hurt when he'd stuck his fingers down his mother's throat to make her throw up the sleeping pills. And then when he'd found her with her wrists cut. Since then, he'd learned to sketch his sadness on his skin with a razor. He liked best to draw hearts. Out of love, hope, longing. Today he wants to draw another one out of, but into the room comes his father, and a fist lands on his head. He holds up his arm to defend himself. The father wraps his hands around his neck, collapses. So today he draws on a smile.
(Translated by Ioana Ștefan / University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year I / Corrected 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.