Bogdan Cristian Balica
Her black hair with shining metal undertones is sloppily tied in a bun. She sits cross-legged on the sofa, inhaling the sweet apple-flavoured vapor from the bong. She blows it out slowly towards the window, where the winter sunbeams neaks into the room among the ice flowers. She twirls the mouthpiece, trying to enjoy the life of a successful single woman she had made for herself. She squints while sighing: inside her canary's cage, life is so beautiful it almost seems real.

Ionuț Morariu
If you can hold a shovel, you're alive. No, that's not true. Digging a hole is a testament to life. Let Yorick be the judge. Yorick, does anything last forever in this world? Poor gravediggers, can't you see that all of Denmark is a cemetery? The dead burry the dead. Screw him, man. That's an answer of a hag. Ask him anything else, and he'll tell you God is an English wizard. Get the rum. It's been raining since yesterday. I meant pouring. Such a heavy rain. If the gravediggers pleased you, feel free to come again tomorrow evening.

Ionuț Tuhoarcă
I once read Charles Bukowski's memories. Apparently his mother always told him off. You moron, spruce up that writing. She was also in the biz. We had sex. In a stairwell. Of an apartment building. It wasn't all that great. Yelling began. Someone from the ninth floor. Are you having sex? In the stairwell? Just what we needed. Sex in the stairwell. I don't remember the chick. I do remember the hag. Shoo. In a housecoat. Raising her fist. Ready for battle. She had eaten stew. Get it, stew? Hank, wake up, dude, your mom is coming.

(Translated by Alin Sescu / 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 November 2023, the group has 12,090 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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