Fighting Fire with Fire

A Nightmare Come True

(Italic Lines mean character is talking to his/herself.)

“Shaaaaay!” Severide yells, as he desperately looks around for his fallen roommate.

“Casey! Get in here! Bring in the Truck team, Shay’s down!” Severide yells over his radio, trying desperately to hide the fear in his voice.

“What?!?” Casey starts.

“You heard me!! Get in here now!” Severide fires back!

“Kelly, just relax a little, come on! You’ve seen worse, we’ll be up in a minute! Just calm down a little.” Casey replies, trying not to laugh.

“Don’t tell me to calm down, when Shay might die on us, right here, right now!” Severide snaps.

“Don’t say that! She’ll be fine and you know it! She’s a fighter!” Casey says.

“Quit talking and get the hell up here!” Severide snaps.

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“Damn it!” Severide curses, still letting his emotions run free.

“I don’t even want to think about how you’d act if I got hurt…” Casey says.

“I’d be worried, but not flipping out like this; that’s what I’d feel like if you got hurt. I feel like I have to protect Shay. That feeling more than doubled after I promised her this would be completely safe, and now look what’s happened!” Severide admits.

“Sounds like you have stuff to get off your chest, we should continue this later; let’s concentrate on getting Shay out of here and started down the road to recovery first!” Casey suggests.

“Okay.” Severide relents. “On three! One! Two! Three!” Severide commands, as the Squad along with Casey’s team, work to move the beam that’s still pinning Shay.

“Got it!” Capp declares triumphantly.

“Careful! We don’t have any idea what kind of injuries she could have.” Severide begs.

“Is that your inner EMT surfacing?” Casey questions, with a smile.

“Really Casey? You’re going to tease me right here, right now? I live with a paramedic, I’ve learned a thing or two!” Severide challenges. “I live with one, and I was an EMT for like a year…” Severide admits.

“Fine, I’ll continue with the teasing later!” Casey says, his smile faltering. “Wait…you were an EMT?”

“That’s a story for another time my friend, it’s defiantly not a story to tell from inside a raging inferno.” Severide says. “We gotta move, NOW!” Severide orders, as he and Casey carefully start the trek to the outside world below.

“Dawson! I’ve got Shay, I don’t know how bad she actually is, I’ll be out in a minute, I’m bringing Mills with me- you two need to move quick!!” Severide stammers.

“We’ll go as quick as we can!” Dawson promises.

“Just relax a little, Shay will be fine!” Dawson adds.

“You better be right!” Severide says over his radio as he and Casey arrive outside, with Mills trailing behind.

“Mills! Come with me as backup, our first priority is making sure Shay survives the trip!” Dawson orders.

*Mills glances in Chief’s direction*

“Just go!” Chief says.

“Otis! Get over here! We need you to drive!” Dawson yells.

“I’m coming too!” Severide pants.

“Only if you promise not to flip out if things go awry.” Dawson replies.

“We got her out, that’s all that matters right now. Now, I just need to be there for her!” Severide says.

“Usually it’s Shay yelling at me about driving!” Otis remarks, as he climbs into the front of the ambulance.

“Mills! Check her vitals and let me know what we’re looking at!” Dawson orders, while staring down at the comatose Shay.

“What hit her exactly?” Dawson asks turning to Severide.

“Some sort of beam I think.” Severide replies.

“What are we looking at Mills?” Dawson asks.

“BP’s down and her heart-rate is a little high, she could be bleeding internally.” Mills reports.

“I can’t feel any broken bones! She’s a fighter remember!” Dawson replies.

“Don’t I know it!” Mills says with a chuckle.

“Hard as nails that Shay!” Dawson says.

“We’re here! Otis’ signature call rings from the front!

“What happened?” A doctor asks.

“Accident during training, a beam fell on her. I didn’t feel any broken bones, but she has a low BP.” Dawson replies, just as Shay’s monitors begin going crazy as her BP plummets!

“We’ll take it from here! She’s in good hands!” The doctor says, rushing back inside.

*Severide watches with a tormented glance as Shay is rushed into surgery*

“She’ll be fine, don’t worry!” Mills says, putting a comforting arm around Dawson.

“Thanks Mills!” Dawson replies with a smile, as they head inside, to anxiously wait for the first update on Shay.

“This is all my fault!” Severide moans quietly, as he leaves the hospital, desperate to blow of some steam.

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3 HOURS LATER…

“How’s Shay?!?” Severide pants, as he comes bursting through the hospital doors, startling Dawson and Mills a considerable deal.

“Haven’t heard anything yet, I’m sure it’ll be soon!” Dawson responds.

“This is all my fault! Damn me always trying to one-up Casey!” Severide curses.

“You didn’t do this on purpose!” Dawson says, trying to comfort the emotionally wrecked rescue squad lieutenant.

“This stupid-ass contest was my idea, I never should have asked you guys to get involved! I even convinced her it would be safe, and nothing would happen to her, dammit! Look at where we are!” Severide moans.

“Someone’s mad…” Mills starts.

“It seems to me like you curse more when you’re upset.” Mills remarks, trying not to laugh.

“Just calm down, you had no idea this would happen! Dawson pleads with Severide.

“I just don’t know what to think! I could have, and almost killed Shay!” Severide says.

“Well you didn’t kill her!” Mills pipes up.

“This is all my fault…” Severide says again.

“Why would even think that?” Dawson challenges.

“The contest was my idea, I asked you guys to help, if I wouldn’t have…” Severide’s voice trails off.

“Look, you taught us as much as you could, there was no way you could have expected this!” Dawson says in a comforting tone.

“I still feel responsible…” Severide says, hanging his head.

“Are you guys here for Leslie Shay?” A doctor asks as she approaches the anxiously waiting trio.

“Yeah, how is she?” Severide asks, standing up.

“Well, she’s got a few cracked ribs and a hairline fracture in her L4 vertebrae. The fracture will take a couple weeks to heal, but other than that she’ll be fine. Would you like to see her?” The doctor says.

“Yeah! Let’s go guys!” Dawson says, before they turn to follow the doctor upstairs.

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3 WEEKS LATER…

“Whoa, whoa, whoa! Is it story time, because I’m curious!” Firehouse 51’s newest addition to rescue squad, firefighter Jeff Clarke says as he pulls up a chair and sits at the squad table curious to hear the story.

“Is there actually a story to tell?” Severide asks almost too innocently.

“Sure there’s a story to tell! Your lieutenant here almost killed me!” Shay says, obviously fine with embarrassing Severide a little.

“Now I have to know what happened!” Clarke implores.

“You’re new here, I should really make you prove yourself before I tell you the story.” Severide muses.

“If you don’t tell him, I’ll tell him!” Shay challenges playfully.

“I digress, do you really want to hear the story?” Severide asks.

“Yeah I really do!” Clarke says, with almost boyish excitement.

“I’ll tell you, so long as you don’t snitch on me!” Severide says with a smile.

“Now why would I ever do that?” Clarke replies, in an amused tone.

“How would I know?” Severide tosses back.

“Last I checked; my bunker gear has ‘CLARKE’ written on the back, not ‘LT. SNITCHMAN’ ”. Clarke replies with a chuckle.

“Wow, that’s impressive Clarke! Nice one!” Mills chimes in, as he joins the group at the squad table.

“I think you just proved yourself Clarke! Severide replies, with a laugh.

“Well, I do try to lighten the mood around here!” Clarke replies.

“It will be nice to have someone with a loose and relaxed personally to entertain we squad members.” Severide says, still smiling.

“So what’s this story I’m being teased with?” Clarke asks.

“You mean the story where Severide almost killed me?” Shay pipes up, seeming to come out of nowhere and startling Severide a bit.

“What the hell Shay?!” Where’d you come from?” Severide stammers. “You seem surprisingly cool with me telling the story- I thought you’d still be pissed at me! Severide says.

“Who says I’m not still a little pissed?” Shay counters with a smile.

“I don’t have a hard time believing that.” Severide replies with a grin.

“I think I’m starting to like the dynamics in this house!” Clarke says.

“I know you would never try and hurt me, and what happened was simply a freak accident you couldn’t have seen coming.” Shay says with a smile.

“So, about that story…” Severide begins.

“I’ve always loved a good story!” Clarke says with a grin.

“Fine, I’ll tell you!” Severide says, finally giving in.

“I know you haven’t been around very long Clarke, but you should have noticed the dynamics between me and the Truck lieutenant; Lieutenant Casey by now. This whole thing started 3 weeks ago, two weeks before you transferred to 51. It’s more of a petty rivalry, but we have fun, good brotherly fun! Casey lost a bet to me, and had to train with Squad for a week. Boy did we give him hell, it was quite fun! We even took him down the Lake, and made him get in the water! We showed him how we practice dive rescues, then made him do it! It was like 40 degrees outside, so that made it even more fun! Instead of torturing him for a week, we decided to amp up the ‘down firefighter assessment’ drill and turn it into a search and rescue contest between our two teams. I had to convince Shay and Dawson to play victims for our little game- or “training exercise” as we called it. It took a little work, but I was able to convince Shay and Dawson to help us out. Not before I had to teach them how to use our gear and the like. Teaching Shay and Dawson how to use the gear was the first time I have ever had to teach anybody something! I decided to make Casey help, and we made a little mini contest out of the teaching session. Man, you would have liked to see it; we had Shay and Dawson run a ‘down firefighter assessment’ in full bunker gear! It was quite fun to watch, I will freely admit that. Since we made them do the drill, they wanted us to show them how we do it. Casey made the mistake of mentioning how he sometimes makes his team run the drill with blacked-out face masks, so Shay and Dawson wanted to see how fast Casey and I as a team could do the drill in full gear, not being able to see. We beat them, but that doesn’t matter! I mean we kind of have an unfair advantage anyway… We got a long call the night we were planning to go down the burn house and do the actual search and rescue contest, and ended up going out to do it at like 3AM the next morning. Shay and Dawson where half-asleep, so I got the fun job of arousing them; we headed out for the burn house and broke into our respective teams and got set up. Dawson was playing truck’s victim, and Shay was squad’s victim. Letting Shay be rescued by my team, I think, was the only reason she agreed to play along with our little contest. Dawson was getting a little nervous, so Casey went up to help her make sure everything was set up right. Casey’s team finished the exercise in around 9 minutes, which is pretty good considering they’re the Truck team! My team went next, and Shay made me double, and triple check her gear. I still remember what she said to me: “You are going to have to help me get this gear on, I really don’t want to screw it up. If I screwed it up, I would be well, screwed!” I actually feel super guilty, since she placed all her trust in me. I left the room, and rejoined my team so we could run the drill. We didn’t finish completely; I guess I forgot to completely turn off the PASS alarm she had on her gear, but now when I think about it, I’m really glad I forgot. Capp was the one who heard it go off when the beam collapsed on top of her. If she hadn’t had that alarm on, I don’t know how long it would have taken us to figure out what’d happened. Seeing Shay pinned like that- scared the crap out of me, just knowing that I put her into the situation and that she didn’t have any training in our field. We got really lucky that she didn’t have any very severe injuries. I really have no idea what I would do if she weren’t around. I’d feel guilty as hell, that’s for sure!” Severide says, finishing the exciting story.

“Wow, quite the story!” Clarke says.

“Guess we’ll never know which 51 team is truly better at search and rescue!” Severide says.

“Between us two, we both know Squad’s the best at everything!” Clarke replies with a chuckle.

“Of course I know that! We’re amazing!” Severide replies with a laugh.

“This is so much better than my other house!” Clarke admits.

“Quite honestly, I think Casey knows that we’re the best too, though he wouldn’t admit it unless he was on his death bed!” Severide says, still laughing.

TRUCK 81, SQUAD 3, AMBULANCE 61… MULTI-CAR ACCIDENT!

“Let’s go guys!” Severide yells, as he heads for the truck, his team following close behind.

“I’m telling you, it’s the snow combined with the holiday season! It’s making people drive like idiots!” Casey says, joining Cruz in the front of truck 81.

“Tell me about it!” Cruz sighs.

“Let’s just hope it’s not too horrible, but who knows, winter in Chicago can be hell sometimes.” Casey says.

“More like all the time!” Cruz replies, with an annoyed expression as the truck roars to life.

“12 cars, is that a new firehouse record?” Herrmann pipes up from the back of the truck.

“It might just be Herrmann, it might just be!” Casey replies with a chuckle.

“What do you want to do Casey?” Severide questions his fellow lieutenant as Squad arrives on scene.

“Truck will start at one end, you guys can start at the other. We both look for injured victims, and rescue the most critical ones first! Let’s try and play this like we would any other car accident.” Casey replies

“Sounds good to me! Mills! Capp! Clarke! Let’s go!” Severide calls.

“Mills, you might want to grab a set of jaws!” Clarke suggests.

“Right!” Mills responds, heading back for the squad truck.

“Help!! Over here! My kids help them!” A frantic cry comes from one of the more mangled cars.

“We’ve got a critical! Severide! This might be out of my realm! Take ‘em!” Casey calls.

“We got it Casey! Mills! Get the jaws, and get Shay and Dawson standing by!” Severide orders.

“Get my kids! Please help them!” The frantic mother says as soon as she sees help arrive.

“Damn ice… Stupid winter! Dammit!” Severide silently curses.

“Your kids are fine! Severide says, as he hears frightened moaning coming from the back.

“Capp! Get the kids out! Mills and I will get the mom!” Severide says.

“Just relax, we will get all of you out!” Mills says.

“My kids! Just get my kids!” The mother cries out.

“Calm down ma’am, one of our guys is working on it now! They will be fine!” Severide says, trying to be reassuring.

“Got ‘em!” Capp says, as he helps the shaken up children to freedom.

“C’mon guys! Let’s get you checked out!” Capp says, as he bends down to the kids’ level.

“Get the backboard, and pull her out on three! One, two, three!” Severide yells.

“You guys are perfect!” Shay says in a tender tone to the two boys, before turning to their mother.

“We’re all good here Severide! We got it! Thanks!” Dawson calls.

“Yeah, no problem let me know how everything turns out!” Severide replies.

“Will do!” Shay calls.

“Casey, got anything major to report?” Severide asks.

“I think we got lucky on this call, it’s just a big ‘fender bender’, I haven’t seen anything worse than minor cuts and bruises so far!” Casey replies, as he walks over to join his fellow lieutenant.

“All we’ve had so far was the woman and kids you found!” Severide says.

“Always nice to not have any serious injuries to deal with.” Casey admits.

“That’s what we have fires for remember!” Severide jokes.

“Right, and those are always so much fun!” Casey says with a smile and a laugh.

“Let’s do one last walk around, and pack it up!” Severide says.

“Go for it!” Casey says.

“Mills! Capp! Got any other injuries?” Severide asks over his radio.

“Nothing that requires any immediate action. Just a few cuts, bruises, and a lot of pretty shaken up people!” Capp replies.

“That makes me love our job even more! Rescuing kids, and responding to calls that look bad, and turn out to not have seriously injured people!” Severide says.

“Less work for you!” Casey says.

“You’re exactly right Casey, less work the better!” Severide says with a grin.

“Now that you’re in charge of Squad, you get to be lazy, is that what I’m hearing?” Casey questions.

“Maybe… Hey! I busted my ass to get where I am mister ‘I’m so awesome because I’m in charge of the truck!’ Severide counters.

“Funny Severide, real mature too!” Casey challenges.

Let’s head out, maybe we can spend the rest of the shift in peace!” Severide says.

“Shut up! You know what is going to happen if you say that!” Casey says in annoyance.

“That’s just a stupid superstition!” Severide replies.

“It’s stupid until it actually rears its ugly head!” Casey taunts.

“I’ll believe that superstition as soon as it happens!” Severide says, heading back for his own team.

He’ll learn! Then I can tell him ‘I told you so!’ ” Casey says to himself.

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“2 full hours of quiet, that’s pretty good for around here!” Severide declares. “Ready to give up on your superstition yet Casey?” Severide asks, as he saunters into the kitchen.

AMBLULANCE 61, TRUCK 81, SQUAD 3… CONSTRUCTION ACCIDENT.

“To answer your question; Nope! I’m not giving it up yet!” Casey says with a grin.

“You just got lucky! That’s it!” Severide hisses, as he heads for his truck.

“I’ll take any victory I can get!” Casey replies with a laugh, and jumps in to his shotgun spot beside Cruz.

“You two amuse me with your antics!” Cruz says.

“I think it’s more Severide’s immaturity that amuses you! Well that and the fact I have to deal with it all the time!” Casey replies, unable to hold back a chuckle.

“Always trying to one-up him?” Cruz questions.

“More like Severide is always trying to one-up me!” Casey says.

“That’s what is so funny about it, you seem like you enjoy his antics!” Cruz says.

“Maybe that isn’t entirely a lie…” Casey admits. “It makes it easier to take the hard days in stride.”

“Seems like it is becoming brotherly fun!” Cruz says.

“Hasn’t it always been that?” Casey questions. “Let’s get out of here!”

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“What are we looking at?” Severide asks as soon as the teams arrive on scene.

“You’re average rescue mission I suppose, some guy’s trapped beneath some wood pallets, and smashed his leg in the process.” Casey replies.

“Shay and Dawson should have some fun with this one!” Severide says.

“We have to be careful, it looks like these beams are all on top of each other, if we move one the wrong way; they all could shift.” Casey says.

“A rescue like this is a bit like playing a game of ‘Jenga’. You have to move the beams one at a time, and step back and look at the structure. Then you plan your next move strategically, according to what you have left in front of you.” Severide says.

“Just have to take it slow.” Mills says.

“Maybe we can pry the top one off, and then slip the backboard in underneath that and free him.” Capp suggests.

“Using another beam as a lever to lift the one pinning him?” Mills asks.

“Exactly.” Severide says. “Nice work Candidate”

“Thanks lieutenant!” Mills replies.

“Shay! Dawson! We are going to need you over here!” Severide calls.

“Okay, we’re coming!” Shay calls.

“Grab the backboard and jump bag!” Dawson says turning to Shay.

“Let’s go!” Shay replies.

“Shay! Dawson! You guys are going to have to move quick when we get this beam up, it’s really unstable!!” Severide calls.

“Just a ‘load-and-go’, I got it!” Shay responds.

“Lift on my count! One! Two! Three!” Casey orders.

“My leg! My leg!” The victim screams in pain.

“Let’s get him out! Now!” Severide yells, just in time to pull the backboard and victim free as the beams crash back to the floor.

“What’s your name?” Dawson asks as soon as they clear the victim from the beams.

“Anthony!” The victim replies with a heavy wince.

“Otis! We need a driver!” Shay calls.

“Ok, Anthony, you’re going be fine, just keep your eyes on us!” Shay says, as she casts a concerned look at Dawson.

“That’s right, you’ll be fine!” Dawson says.

“How long were you under those beams Anthony?” Shay asks, as she reaches for some pain meds.

“I don’t remember, maybe 30 minutes.” Anthony replies.

“Can you feel this?” Shay asks, as she jabs a needle at Anthony’s foot.

“Feel what?” Anthony asks. “Oh, god; does that mean I’m paralyzed?!”

“Let’s not jump to any conclusions, let’s just get you to the hospital first.” Dawson replies.

“I haven’t been able to feel my leg in 15 minutes!” Anthony says, with a fearful look in his eyes.

“Just relax, we’re almost to the hospital, the doctors will take good care of you!” Shay says.

“How much longer Otis?” Dawson calls.

“3 minutes!” Otis replies.

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“You think Anthony’s leg can be saved?” Shay asks.

“We’ll just have to check back later, I’d say it’s about a 50/50 chance to be honest.” Dawson admits with a grim expression.

“Looks like we will be entering the waiting game for a little while!” Shay says.

“Let’s just get back to house, we can check back if we get another run later.” Dawson says, as she finishes the last of the required paperwork.

“Sounds good, let’s head out!” Shay replies.

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“Where did you go? We’ve been back here for over an hour!” Severide questions as Shay and Dawson arrive back a 51.

“Says you, Squad’s always first one back anyway!” Shay counters.

“Well then! Severide huffs.

“Well what? It’s true!” Shay teases with a laugh.

“We do plenty!” Severide replies, craning his neck to make sure his fellow lieutenant is out of sight. “We’re just there fix what Casey’s team can’t!”

“You two, always comparing teams, it’s almost cute!” Shay says with a laugh.

“We have a serious competition going here, mind you!” Severide says, unable to hold back a snicker.

“Real serious all right, I call it a silly contest!” Shay says.

“Don’t ever insult our little contest!” Severide says, making a mock upset face.

“Oh I’m sorry your majesty!” Shay retorts sarcastically.

“Well played!” Severide relents.

“Have you seen Casey?” Shay asks.

“Nope, I was just going to look for him, I’ll let him know you’re looking for him.” Severide says, turning to head for the kitchen.

“Severide, there you are! I was looking for you!” Casey says, almost running into Severide.

“I was too, what’s up?” Severide asks.

*Severide doesn’t get far, before being stopped by the sound of the overhead pager signaling another call!*

TRUCK 81, SQUAD 3, AMBULANCE 61… BUILDING FIRE!

“Let’s role!” Casey says, pulling away from the conversation he and Severide were having!

“Wait…that address; it sounds so familiar…” Casey’s mind says, just as a look of sheer horror crosses his face.

“No! No, no, no! It can’t be! That’s… No! I can’t even bear the thought! Oh no! Casey’s mind silently panics as he darts out of the kitchen and towards his truck!

“What is it with kids these days?” Severide asks Casey, over the radio in the Squad truck.

“I don’t know, isn’t this the second or third school incident we’ve responded to this year?” Casey replies.

“Kids will be kids I guess…” Severide sighs.

“Pulling up to a school, you know as well as I; it could be nothing, or we could be facing a major catastrophe!” Casey says.

“I know that, let’s just hope some kid pulled the fire alarm to mess with us!” Severide replies.

“I don’t think that’s quite what we’re dealing with this time…” Casey says, mouth agape when he sees the sight before him.

“What the he--?!” Severide starts, but can’t find any more words to describe the situation that now lies before him and the firehouse 51 teams.

“We’ve got the potential for a really bad situation here, this could turn ugly really quick! I think we are going to need more alarms!” Casey stammers.

“Let’s just get the teams together, get inside and get an idea at what we’re looking at here!” Severide says, as he turns to gather his team and head inside the burning school.

“Cruz and Otis! With me! Mouch and Herrmann, to the roof! Let’s go!” Casey orders.

“We’re going as a team guys! Follow Casey! We could have tons of trapped kids!” Severide yells.

*Casey feels his phone buzz, and quickly takes is from his pocket. The look on his face, suggests he’s gotten some horrible news!*

“The fight got out of control! Some kid had a cigarette lighter… I’m so scared; it’s dark, smoky, and hard to breathe in here! Help me! Room 381! ” –Emily.


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