She wakes at 7:35, after lounging in her blankets for five minutes listening to her mother’s babbling and the morning news drowning out the incessant beeping of her alarm. For a moment she covers her head with her quilt and holds her breath, as if to escape from her noisy environment. But then she sighs and gets up, and her day begins.
Crossing her room several times she retrieves the pieces of her outfit that she had chosen to wear that day. She puts on her pink jacket in absentminded tugs, and stops when she realises that it would be the third time she’d worn a garment of that colour that week. Looking around at the several mounds of clothes left all over her desk and rug, she can see no replacement jacket that would be acceptable for work and remembers, for the third time that week, why a trip to the shops was an urgent necessity. But she doesn’t have time for it. She hadn’t had much of that for herself these past weeks, no months, if she was being honest, and even when she wasn’t at Henrik’s she couldn’t remember what she did with her time anyway.
At another sharp remark from the kitchen she returns to packing her shoulder bag, does a quick brush of the front of her teeth and bolts from the room. Her mother greets her in her favourite lavender silk robe with a mug of greatly needed tea. A plate of toast and a jar of jam on the coffee table tells her that Jackie at least is having a great morning. This is later confirmed when the story of the morning’s newspaper pick-up round is told to her with elaborate detail. With a bite of bread, a sip, a big swallow and a sloppy kiss on the cheek she’s skipped out the front door. She hopes that her mother is preoccupied enough with her morning to not mind locking up after her.
She slips in beside her friend just as the back doors are opened to the department. For the next four and a half hours she’s sorting and folding clothes and showing oblivious customers to their desired aisles. Nothing happens, but the time never goes fast enough. Mickey meets her at the front with her favourite wrap and drink, chats about crabby customers at the computer shop and manages to put a smile on her face. Nothing happens for the rest of her shift, except an incident in the children’s clothing area that has her keeping an eye on the two child dummies on display. They seem to change positions every moment she looks away, but it must be another pair of kids mucking about. It isn’t anything she hasn’t faced before.
At the end of the day she’s running out the front exit with her two friends, but Fred the doorman still manages to catch her. With a sigh she takes the lottery money and goes downstairs to the leaky storage room that had always given her shivers. Wilson finds her after fifteen minutes of useless banging on every door on the level and she makes it home an hour late. She survives Jackie’s worried nagging and goes through half of her dinner before the day becomes too much and she retires to her bed for the night.
Rose Tyler rests her hand on her alarm and for a moment, she wishes she didn’t have to set it for another day of her life, her normal lifeless life. But eventually she does, and Rose goes to sleep in her bedroom in her house in the Powell Estates, not having met the Doctor, or the Living Plastic or seeing the TARDIS. She drifts to sleep not knowing the wonderful life she would have begun that day.
And from that day onwards the world shifts a little out of place, and another universe is born in its place.