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Chicago Fire: Arson Lures Severide Away Again — Will He Be Back?

Just three episodes into Chicago Fires new season, Kelly Severide is once again being lured away from the Windy City by the draw of arson investigation.

In Wednesday’s installment, the firefighter received overnighted documents for an ATF case, courtesy of Office of Fire Investigation Captain Van Meter. Although Severide appears to review the files, he tells Van Meter that he’s not doing fire investigation right now. Van Meter argues that Severide has a talent, one that can save lives and set him up for a bright future when he retires from squad.

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“Now’s a tricky time,” Severide reiterates, ruling out that this isn’t about his father Benny.

When Stella confronts her husband and notes that she didn’t have a choice with the arsonist targeting the firehouses, Severide tries to reason with her. With that case, he had to do something, whereas with this investigation, “this is something I want,” he explains, echoing Van Meter’s point that it could open doors down the road, like if he wanted to run OFI some day.

“Let me show you I can handle a case like this and come back home to you,” Severide adds. But he won’t go if Stella is not OK with it.

Eventually, a conversation with Cruz — who’s not sure if Severide cares if he stays on squad or goes — prompts Stella to give her hubby the OK to go to Arizona. She doesn’t want him to ever feel trapped, she says, so he has her blessing… as long as he comes back soon and doesn’t go MIA on her again.

“That’s the plan,” Severide reassures her. Stella adds that she’s not the only one whose permission he should ask. After wrongly assuming she’s referring to Chief Boden, Severide has a chat with Cruz and tells him he won’t leave unless Cruz agrees to step into his shoes. There’s no one else he trusts to take care of squad in his absence. Cruz is happy with that sentiment and relays to Boden that it’s not the right time for him to take his lieutenant test and leave the firehouse, after all.

Meanwhile, Stella and Severide say their goodbyes outside a cab, with Severide promising to fix the sink when he gets back. So that’s a good sign that he intends to keep his promise and not disappear. But we’ve seen before how lost Severide can get in the job.

Last season, the rescue squad lieutenant left for an arson investigation training program in Alabama when his portrayer Taylor Kinney took a leave of absence from the NBC drama to deal with a personal matter. Stella later learned that Severide was no longer in Alabama, having been recruited to help with an ATF investigation. After Severide was vague about the job and a timetable for his return to Chicago, Stella decided in the season finale to take some time off work to go bring her husband back home.

Severide’s been back in the Windy City for six months now, but it appears he will (temporarily?) be departing again. Chicago Fire fans, how are you feeling about this latest development?

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