The mermaid looked at me baffled. First of all. Love yourself. If you don't have respect for yourself you can't have respect for others. Second of all. Stop judging (yourself). Because people are different and it's better that way. Besides, you have no idea what the man in front of you went through before he met you. And third of all. Be honest. That way, you don't need a good memory to remember all the crap you've said that will come out eventually. For lying is like an oil stain. And love is like the sea. Kisses.

(Translated by Ana-Maria Batog / 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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