Vlad Mușat
As a friend with the Geography teacher, I got a place on the trip with the 5th grade students. We hiked up for a few hours, then found a campsite. At one point, a girl and a boy, both wearing NASA hoodies, came closer. Talking and talking, I poured them a little bit of some fire water and warned them that they were in the sights of aliens. It's a story I repeat on trips like this. In the morning, the boy woke me up. Neila, my sister, is gone. Look. The hoodie logo had been cut off, a sign that the plan was working.

Georgiana Gabriela Fodor
We got to the cabin, 13 of us. Thirteen brave men equipped for climbing Salt Mountain. We made the fire. Seated in a circle, all thirteen of us chose the rules and started. One story of wood, one of stone, one of metal. Twelve of us followed the mountain's thread, the thirteenth threw himself like a streak of lightning into the fire. We hit the ceiling, but a black smoke came out of him. Through the spiral of sparks, we found ourselves at the foot of the mountain. We had now become the characters of a founding narrative.

Fabiola Stoi
And what a mountain. King of the mountains. An eight-thousandmeter peak was towering in front of them. The news said they'd attacked the massif on the eastern versant, thehardest one. But it wasn't an attack, it was a visit on a legendary land. They climbed with no sherpas and no oxygen. Level after level, days of climbing, with ropes and ice axes left behind as crumbs of hope. On top, the flag gleamed in the sun, fluttering in an unexpectedly warm wind. It is said that when the sun is up, the mountain has taken its sacrifice. On the accessible versant, another team fell under the guerrilla bullets.

(Translated by Florina Georgiana Țîncu / University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year I / Corrected by prof dr. Nadina Vișan, Edited 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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