Sometimes my mom's boss gives her a chicken. I like to watch her remove the skin and put only the meat on my plate. Bits and pieces. She has the leftovers. She sucks one the bone, she cracks it with her teeth. Why do you do that, mom? I asked. I like the marrow, she replied. I promised myself that when I grew up, I'll have a husband, and that I won't end up poor. Now I'm a mother too. I put my daughter's meat on her plate. Bits and pieces. I eat the leftovers, I crack the bone between my teeth. I think might marry my boss.
In the darkness of the cave the man groped at his miserable skin. Over the years it had grown callous with harsh crocodile-like folds. It wrapped him like a tight shell. He picked up the flint and began to carve it. Not a trace of blood. Instead the skin cracked like tree bark. Hatched like a chicken out of an egg. His body was wet and soft, like a newborn's. He slipped through the stones to the mouth of the cave. From the top of the cliff, the huge varanus flicked its split tongue at him. The man raised his middle finger and the varan swallowed his tongue. The light blinded him.
He was getting a whiff of her neck, when he heard a knock on the door. Merde, mouthed the king with his nose buried in his mistress's hair. Don't move, mon petit, he gasped, standing up straight and pulling his sheet up to his double chin. Mon roi, began the doctor, his eyes downcast, I must see the effect of my pimples on your eczema; you said my life was depending on it. You may go, you are spared, chuckled both the king and the sheet. And home he went, hastily packing his bag. The King had grown a third leg, he saw it with his own eyes.
(Translated by Adela Neacșu / 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 July 2023, the group has 11,540 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.