“Chicago Fire” recap (1.18) “Hey bruiser”

Heather Darden shows up in her Jeep to chat with Casey. She asks if he found an earring in his truck after they made out like a couple of teenagers after the firefighter prom. Then she asks him out to eat and he’s just too nice to shut her down. Severide sees them talking from inside the fire house but before he can get a grip on what’s going on there’s a call over the P.A. that there’s a smoke eater in the house.

It’s B-B-B-Benny and do-nuts. He sashays past Severide and Boden, neither of whom is thrilled to see this joker in the house. Boden glares at Severide because that’s his natural state and Severide shoves his hands in his pockets and stomps after his dad. Benny makes himself comfortable and starts telling stories about the good old days and this secretary who had no personal items on her desk. The only thing she had was a sign that said “If you can‘t do anything about it, don’t worry about it.” Turns out the sign wasn’t hers either, it was there when she got the job and she never took it down. All along Benny thought Ruthie was the Oracle at Delphi when really she was just lazy.

Boden is not amused with the trip down memory lane and asks to talk to Benny somewhere out of sight where their screaming match will be heard by everyone anyway. Boden bellows in the locker room about Benny not being welcome in the house. Benny’s mad because this was his house for years. Severide walks in and tells dad and papa that their idiotic plan to fight with the door open has blocked exactly zero noise from the rest of the house. Casey bounces in like the annoying apple shiner that he is and says there is someone waiting for them downstairs. Boden threatens Benny, Benny sasses back, and Boden just leaves shaking his head. Severide asks his dad to stop being such a jackass and at least respect the firehouse.

Waiting downstairs is the charming union rep who may or may not have set the fire at the restaurant. He’s a jerk and he yells at Severide, Casey, and Boden before leaving them with a rude gesture. Charming.

Shay is sitting on a bunk and screening more donors while Dawson is busy folding clothes on another bunk as she does at Firehouse 51 Fluff and Fold. Dawson is about to tell Shay about how she knows something about Mills’ dad that he doesn’t when Shay slams the cover on her iPad and gets a goofy look on her face.

Dawson grabs the iPad and her eyes almost fall out of her head. Sitting on the screen in all his glory is Mouch’s headshot. We’re going to need to see some of that.

Shay scurries off to confront Mouch. He’s mortified that his realtor headshot is still on there since he thought he aged out of the least anonymous sperm donor registry in the history of the world. Shay’s a little freaked out but now she realizes she’s got an inside man and she’s going to pump him for all he’s got. Ew. I mean, she wants to ask a few questions. He wants to know who else knows. She says “no one.” He says, what about Dawson? She revises “just Dawson.” Yeah, everyone knows that if Shay knows it, so does her hetero life partner.

Before she can get any answers they are called out to another restaurant fire. A bus driver called it in because she saw a man on fire (not Denzel) run out of the restaurant. They go in thinking it will be a recovery but don’t find anybody inside. Instead they find a badly burned homeless man under a pile of pallets behind the restaurant. They call for Shawson who are hopeful for a second before the guy dies. The fire is the same M.O. as the last one and they tell the arson investigator that it’s the union guy. Turns out he’s got an alibi. Whoops. Severide and Casey harumpf around the Chief’s office and he lets them out to go investigate as long as they take Benny with them. Severide protests but Boden grudgingly admits that Benny is a great arson investigator.

Benny is poking around the kitchen looking for some ring-dings to eat when Mills walks in and asks if he can cook something for him. Benny says no and then Mills starts asking questions about his dad and the other firefighter who died. Benny is trying to behave but he makes a remark about how it’s sad that the other guy never met his daughter and how it didn’t need to happen that way. Mills asks more questions but Benny claims that it’s actually really hard to talk about and not the only reason he’s still skulking around the house. Mills calls him on it and says that he thinks Benny has something he wants to say. Before Benny can talk Severide tells his dad to come investigate an arson with him. Is this the firefighter equivalent of “let’s go throw a ball around in the backyard?”

Shay is ready to get answers. She wants to talk sperm and how the sperm gets from a man to the little test tube. Shay, this is why the internet was invented. He is happy that he doesn’t have any contact with any of his potential offspring. Shay is a little disillusioned by the entire process. Mouch cheers her up with a heartwarming story of a little girl conceived with donor sperm and how much her parents love her. She asks if that’s why he decided to donate and he laughs, tells her that for $125 per donation he was happy to use his “renewable resource” for beer money or whatever. Shay ends the conversation by saying that it’s all a bit impersonal for her and that she wants to figure something else out. Maybe start with a plant, or a nice cat. Or, better yet, something else could involve a beautiful woman and a long weekend filled with “baby making” practice. A girl can dream.

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