When Things Got Rough
Season 2, Episode 17
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Air date March 18, 2014
Written by Andrea Newman
Directed by Jann Turner
Runtime 42 minutes
Episode Guide
"A Rocket Blasting Off"
"Until Your Feet Leave the Ground"

When Things Got Rough is the seventeenth episode of the second season and the 41st overall episode of Chicago Fire.


Lt. Severide is reminded of his own past by a man he saves from a car accident and feels compelled to help him. Elsewhere, Lt. Casey and Chief Boden grapple with how to dock Jones per her father's orders. Meanwhile, Mouch and Dawson have troubles with the opposite sex and an emotional call to duty creates ripples throughout Firehouse 51.


A house fire sends the squad to a walk-up engulfed in flames and a family trapped inside. Once the firefighters work their way through, they make a startling discovery - a father lays over his wife and children, acting as a human shield from the fire. An impassioned rescue follows, but it's too late for the father; Dawson declares him dead outside. The squad mourns his heroic sacrifice.

Back at the station, Mouch relays some tough news - his Japanese girlfriend officially dumped him. Casey encourages him to "rally," which Mouch interprets as asking Shay for some dating advice. Shay returns to him with a dating site called Golden Oldeez. Mouch scoffs at the very suggestion, but later he admits some of the women on the site might be matches. Maybe he is ready to rally...

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Ramsey, the guy from Main Dispatch who surprised Dawson at Molly's last week, continues to creep her out by imposing a more personal attitude to their professional relationship, even calling her on her private cell phone. Dawson, fearful he's stalking her, files a report against Ramsey; but he denies any wrongdoing, and soon enough Boden warns her - without proof of a threat, she should back off. But Ramsey loses his job anyway and later startles Dawson outside the station. He tells her the true reason behind his behavior - she reminds him of a friend who passed away. Ramsey produces a photo, and Dawson notices a real resemblance.

Another call places Severide at a car wreck involving a man who saved a woman from surefire injury. Severide manages to free the man's arm from a car tire, and he learns the guy is a former firefighter (now on disability) named Bloom. Bloom's heroics inspire Severide to visit him on multiple occasions and invite him to 51, but eventually Bloom grows tired of the repeated interruptions - he wants nothing to do with the lieutenant's pet improvement project.

More shocking, however, is what Boden announces to the group near the end of shift - the widow of the man who died in the house fire has charged CFD with wrongful death. The squad reports to a hearing on the case, and with the widow present, Casey describes every detail, struggling to maintain his composure while recalling the courageous event. Once finished, the widow grieves openly and later drops the charges.

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At Molly's, Dawson's guilt over costing Ramsey his job leads her to asks Jones - and, in turn, her father - for help. Jones agrees and comments on how nice her dad's been lately... which leads Dawson to level with the candidate and tell her the truth about his intentions. Devastated, Jones storms away.

Unbeknownst to Jones or Dawson, Casey and Boden bond over the intense day and make a big decision - they will not seek to disqualify Jones. But now that she knows, was the damage already done?