Like in a bad Philanthropy, every morning she made him expose his amputated legs on Victory Avenue, deluding him that each day spent there is a step closer to purchasing prosthetics. He had been wearing the same ragged clothes for two weeks, the only thing that changed was the text on the piece of cardboard since the old one had faded from the rain. When the little girl in a wheelchair approached and handed him a pretzel, tears instantly moistened his eyes and all he could utter was: I don't deserve it.

(Translated by Diana Pașcanu / 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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