What's Past Is Prologue
Of course, the Santas attack: their trumpets become flamethrowers and there are blue gouts of flame everywhere, people screaming, Rose knowing -- or assuming -- that they're the targets, hiding behind things, getting caught, screaming and running in the maddening crowd. A giant Christmas tree in the square falls to the ground on top of one of the Santas, whose mask clatters to the ground and is creepy. Rose and Mickey run down the street and hop in a taxi. "What's going on? What've we done?" asks Mickey, and Rose explains her assumption that they're after the Doctor. "I can't even go shopping with you, we get attacked by a brass band!" Rose ignores Mickey and calls Jackie, but Jackie's already on the phone. She walks around bitching about Rose turning up without warning, brings a cup of tea in, and sets it beside the Doctor, looking at him worriedly as she continues to yak. "Think about it: they were after us. What's important about us? Well, nothing. Except the one thing we've got tucked up in bed. The Doctor." And as long as you believe that, you'll do anything to stay with him. It wasn't that Rose was just a shopgirl -- it was that she didn't know she was already more than that. If it's about the Doctor's loneliness this year, it's also about Rose forgetting that she was awesome to begin with, time or no time, no matter how many times Jackie and Mickey try to explain to her: you've gotta come down off that cloud sometime, love, or you might as well be dead, and infinity doesn't mean anything at all if you don't come back and play with humanity. The difference between heroes and saints is that heroes come back, changed, and saints just disappear. Jackie leaves the Doctor with another worried look and an untouched cup of tea, and more vortex spills out of him, once she's gone.