She didn't want to grow anymore. Her teacher had told her she was too big-boned and rather tall for a ballerina. She walked with her knees bent and her back bent for fear of standing out. She kept the best rhythm and was the best, but her colleagues looked at her with pity and laughed at her behind her back. Anastasia Volochkova was excluded from the ballet troupe because her partners suddenly fell ill or quit. Then she refused to do favours for eccentric billionaires, even though they were forced to accept.

(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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