The title is dreadful, I know, but my brain just decided to stop working, so suggestions would be much appreciated. Thanks!
He must be divorced - or maybe he was never married, and made some mistakes in the past? But he has a daughter now, five or six years old, and speaking English in comparison with her father's foreign tongue. His face lights up when he calls her from the train, and we, sitting across the carriage, can't help but smile at his fatherly tones. Maria is pregnant, and he's watching her smooth her abdomen. She realises that he's staring at her, and awkwardly smiles back.
His tone, as well as language, obviously changes when the mother speaks to him, but they must have long since worked out their differences, and can stand to call each other "friend". He closes his phone, and kisses it with such deep emotion that I wonder if he's contemplating the idea of never seeing his child again.
His ticket is for London, I know that much from his conversation with the ticket man back in Manchester, but he gets off in Oxford. When the train starts to roll away, I watch out the window - and see him remove his jacket and cut the red wires of the Hamas bomb strapped to his chest.