"Firehouse 51. House fire, 766 Maple Street. Truck 81, Squad 3, Ambulance 61."
Sirens wailed once more, like they have done for years, but the excitement never died. The firefighters of Chicago never tire of protecting their flawless city from the roaring flames.
"Hey, Kelly, that address is only across the street from where Darden-" Matt was rapidly cut off by Severide's reply.
"Casey, say no more. I know it's been two years since we lost Andy but lets hope this is a coincidence alright?"
A quick nod from Matt concluded a short conversation between him and his friend as he sprinted towards the truck, half running, half stumbling trying to get his fireproof gear on. "Chrisie." He paused for split second, "Candidate, go with Herrmann in the back of the truck. First day, when we get to the scene you stand back out of way and let us do our job, okay?"
Chrisie nodded with a nervous expression as everyone piled into Truck 81. "Hey, you can do this kid." Herrmann said, patting her on the shoulder as he slammed the door shut. "First day is always a tough one, but you'll pull through. Alright Lieutenant! We're ready!"
Matt accelerated out of the parking bay with Squad and Ambo trailing behind, sirens echoing in the heat of Chicago. Within minutes of the alarm in the firehouse going off, Truck arrived at the scene. "Oh god..." Matt muttered as he pulled up next to the burning building. Smoke billowed from the windows like a Phoenix rising from the ashes. Doors slammed shut as the team climbed out to be greeted by Chief Boden already calling out orders. "Lieutenant Casey, get your team in there A-S-A-P! You have barely five minutes to pull out any survivors!"
Matt's heart began to race and the adrenaline pumped through him like it did every time. God, he loved his job. "Candidate, you know what to do."
"Copy that Lieutenant."
"Otis, Mouch, round the back, cut off any electric supply! Herrmann, Cruz, Dawson, with me!"
The four firefighters masked up and threw themselves into the flaming building, while the other two ran behind the side of the house. The paramedics of Ambo 61 ran into the area carrying stretchers and bags of equipment, Sylvie and Chillie taking lead, the new Ambo candidate following quickly behind. Squad 3 stepped out next to them and were ordered on standby. "But Chief, that'll blow any minute, we have to provide backup."
"Lieutenant Severide, do not dare go in there. No one dies today, got it?"
Severide puffed angrily and fist pumped the Squad truck, looking over at Chrisie in concern.
"He'll be okay. Casey's a tough one." Severide said with a subtle smile.
The flames continued to blaze bright and for a moment, not long, but for a moment everything went silent. The air filled with black smoke as the radio crackled to life.
"Chief, Herrmann here. We got five DOA's. Two parents... and three kids."
"Alright, bring em out, you got less than two minutes. Hurry."
"Five?" Chrisie's voice cracked as her eyes welled up with tears and a hand, Severide's hand, landed on her shoulder.
"All part of the job, Candidate. Hardest part. Especially for Herrmann."
The radio crackled to life once more, which grabbed the attention of the whole team. "Chief! We got a problem!"
"Strong smell of Gasoli-"
"Casey, get out of there NOW! It's gonna blow!"
Roaring flames. Hot and blazing.
The calm before the storm.
The tick before the bomb.