We locked eyes. God, I was so ashamed. I was licking an ice cream and was wondering what I could use to grease the kitchen cupboard door, since it was creaking so loudly. I wiped the traces of sweat from my cleavage with a napkin and looked into the distance. Will it work with olive oil? With butter? My tongue surrounded the ice cream with interest. Phew, what a scorcher! He was looking at me with his hands under his chin, sitting at the neighbouring table. Like the lion is looking at the zebra. Who knows what he thought I was imagining. I ran away, leaving the cone in the ashtray, tip up. Whoa whoa.

(Translated by Tania Diniță / 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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