Corina Nina
The man is reading in the armchair, by the light of the lamp. He is bent over the thick book, which he is holding on his knee and is scanning the lines. The book casts a large shadow on the wall, and the little girl, curled up next to the armchair, plays with it. He waits for the moment when the page rises, like a wing, higher in the air, then rests modestly on top of the other pages that have already been turned. It's her favourite game. Silent. I want to be a book, dad, a book with many pages, read to me every night.

Cristina Daniela Dumitru-Pascal
Read me a story, daddy. And the little girl would sit with her head on his arm and her blue gaze would cling to his unshaven cheek with such love that he felt his beard was crying. She fell asleep with her hand over him, clutching his blouse as if she was afraid of losing him. The years have passed. He is sitting on the white hospital bed with the book next to him on the bedside table. Both being old. They have ragged edges and wrinkled sheets. He falls asleep. Through his sleep he feels the kiss on his forehead. Someone picks him up. Let me read you a story, daddy. It's reading time.

Gheorghiță Mircea
I was left handed. I was hungry, I sold my card to buy jeans. Student without jeans? At a free soup, at the MV canteen, K sees me. I have something, you make a hundred an hour. What the? A woman. What the hell, do you see me gigolo? Look at me, I still have 60 kilos at 1.80. Is she really that ugly? You say it's Sharon Stone. And? You only have to read for an hour. That's it. It goes, one hundred is mine. Why are you giving up, it's easy. That's what I thought too. You have to read an hour of Henry Miller and she is in front of you like in Basic Instinct. In 5 minutes the stuttering hit me.

(Translated by Andreea Maria Liceanu / 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 January 2024, the group has 12,500 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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