I searched for you every single day. In the gazes of passers-by, in the deep pockets of the soul and on the beginning's promenade, when you'd just lost your pin-like heel, stuck in the burning asphalt. You smiled shyly at me, and we went on our way. Since then, I stop by every block of warm bitumen to breathe in its scent and look for traces of you. Every morning, your hurried steps echo in my head, even if I've become deaf and my sight is a black curtain to me. And you can no longer move your legs, but I kiss their footsteps. Nowhere, no. You've always existed in me.

(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.

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