The last time I saw him, he was crossing the street with a girl hanging around his neck. Pry her off, I tell him, people are laughing at you. I can't, ever since last night I've been trying to, it's like she's welded to me. The cars were honking, and I pushed him on the sidewalk: Stay here. I swipe the cruet from the first terrace table I see and pour plenty of salt around him. She has no reaction. I put a little pepper, what could go wrong? Nada. I paint a cross of oil on his forehead, a spritz of vinegar and that was it. She unwrapped her arms already turned into these big wings, and by the time I was able to get to him, he hung in the air his hands stuck to her milky and round breasts, two floating balloons.  

(Translated by Monica-Andreea Gaman / 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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