The zoo was bustling with tourists. I passed the penguin pool. I used to stop to admire their jumps, but not today. I also ignored the show put on by the coral keeper with his huge brush. If only he could remove from my heart the memories of you, to be able to forgive you. New message: I'm waiting for you at the yard of the zebra. I was struck by the irony. Either white or black, I reproached you. I typed:not okapi. That's how we had been, a combination of passion and pride, a horrible story. You haven't reached yet.

(Translated by Iuliana Mocanu / 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 May 2023, the group has 11,260 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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