She caught his attention among the people waiting by the roadside: small, squat, dressed in black. He asked her where she was going, and she pointed to the axis of the road. They passed a rest stop and she told him she was hungry. They finished eating and she told him she wanted to take a shower. Are you my black swan? he asked her and she put her wet red lips over his. In the morning she woke up, got dressed, took the car keys and from the door, half turned, whispered to him in a hushed voice, because he couldn't hear her anyway: the widow.

(Translated by Andreea Grințescu / University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year II / 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 April 2023, the group has 11,000 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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