I AM NOT A WAITER. I HAVE BEEN A STUDENT, A SCIENTIST, A SOLDIER, MY WIFE IS CALLED ALSANA, WE LIVE IN EAST LONDON BUT WE WOULD LIKE TO MOVE NORTH. I AM A MUSLIM BUT ALLAH HAS FORSAKEN ME OR I HAVE FORSAKEN ALLAH, I'M NOT SURE. I HAVE A FRIEND—ARCHIE—AND OTHERS. I AM FORTY-NINE BUT WOMEN STILL TURN IN THE STREET. SOMETIMES. (3.81)
"Well, well. That's something, isn't it?" said Archie, placing his hands behind his head and lying back to look at the stars. "To have a bit of history in your blood like that. Motivates you, I'd imagine. I'm a Jones, you see. 'Slike a 'Smith.' We're nobody... My father used to say: 'We're the chaff, boy, we're the chaff.' Not that I've ever been much bothered, mind. Proud all the same, you know. Good honest English stock. But in your family you had a hero!" (5.129)
"You don't stand for anything, Jones," continued Samad. "Not for a faith, not for a politics. Not even for your country. How your lot ever conquered my lot is a bloody mystery. You're a cipher, no?"
"And an idiot. What are you going to tell your children when they ask who you are, what you are? Will you know? Will you ever know?"
"What are you that's so bloody fantastic?"
"I'm a Muslim and a Man and a Son and a Believer. I will survive the last days." (5.335-339)