Firefighters

June 5, 2024

FIREFIGHTER 1 and FIREFIGHTER 2 are in the front seats of a fire truck on their way to a large and out-of-control house fire. FIREFIGHTER 1 has done this job for many years, while FIREFIGHTER 2 is experiencing their first day on the job.

 

FIREFIGHTER 1 is driving. FIREFIGHTER 2 is in the passenger’s seat.

FIREFIGHTER 1

Since this is your first day on the job and your first house fire, I should give you a lowdown on what to expect.

FIREFIGHTER 2 (leaning back and looking rather relaxed and unbothered)

Yep, all right.

FIREFIGHTER 1

First, you need to be prepared for the heat. You’re looking at temperatures of upwards of 700 degrees Celsius. The smoke is gonna sting your eyes, and the heat of the blaze is gonna make you feel like your skin is melting off. Think nachos in a microwave.

FIREFIGHTER 2 (still unbothered)

Damn. 

FIREFIGHTER 1

Do not, for any reason, take off any of your safety gear. This includes your helmet.

FIREFIGHTER 2

Got it.

FIREFIGHTER 1

Get people out first and pets out second. Small pets like hamsters and goldfish are gonna need to be sacrificed, but try to grab any cats or dogs if you can safely do so. Again, only do this after it is confirmed that all humans are out.

FIREFIGHTER 2

Do we have air conditioning in this thing?

FIREFIGHTER 1

The family will be hysterical, but it is not our job to comfort them. It is our job to extinguish the fire.

FIREFIGHTER 2 (turning on air conditioning)

Woah, we do!

FIREFIGHTER 1

If any members of the family attempt to run back into the house to retrieve anything, you MUST prevent them from doing so, even if this involves physical restraint.

FIREFIGHTER 2 (turning air conditioning up)

That’s a nice breeze! Really cools me off!

FIREFIGHTER 1

Hold on to the water hoses because the water pressure can easily make you loosen your grip and drop the hose. Think wrestling with a giant anaconda. Hang on for dear life.

FIREFIGHTER 2

My own car doesn’t even have air conditioning this good!

FIREFIGHTER 1

Be prepared for windows to blow out. Think confetti cannon but with shards of glass.

FIREFIGHTER 2 (reclining their seat)

Woah, these seats recline?

FIREFIGHTER 1

If any of the family is hurt, call for an ambulance right away but also begin medical treatment.

FIREFIGHTER 2 (reclining their seat even further back)

Woah! These seats, like, really recline!

FIREFIGHTER 1

Injuries you can expect from a house fire like this usually include first- to second-degree burns on exposed skin or smoke inhalation in the lungs.

FIREFIGHTER 2 (still reclining)

Oh, my god! I can practically lie right down!

FIREFIGHTER 1

If any members of the family are unconscious, start CPR immediately.

FIREFIGHTER 2

No way! We have a speaker in here?

FIREFIGHTER 1

The fire will grow bigger as soon as it is exposed to oxygen. Try to keep doors closed.

FIREFIGHTER 2

And it’s Bluetooth?!

FIREFIGHTER 1

Turn off electrical appliances if you have time.

FIREFIGHTER 2

I’m gonna see if I can hook my phone up to it.

FIREFIGHTER 1

If you feel like you are going to pass out, exit the house immediately. If you fall unconscious inside the house, there is no guarantee that any of us will be able to pull you out.

FIREFIGHTER 2

Here, this is my party music playlist.

FIREFIGHTER 1

If you pass out inside the house, you die. Get out as soon as you start feeling faint or light-headed.

Party music begins to play.

FIREFIGHTER 2 (grooving along to the music)

This song always gets me hyped up.

FIREFIGHTER 1 (turning down the music)

Are you paying attention to me?

FIREFIGHTER 2 (turning up the music)

Oh yeah, totally.

FIREFIGHTER 1

And remember, your priority is to put out the fire. Not to save expensive items.

A siren blares.

FIREFIGHTER 2

Can we turn down the siren, so I can hear the song better?

FIREFIGHTER 1

We’re here. Get ready to jump out.

The truck comes to a stop, and FIREFIGHTER 1 jumps out.

FIREFIGHTER 2 reclines their seat all the way back. They turn up the music, and the air conditioning, close their eyes, and happily jam out to the music. A member of the family cries out “My house!” but FIREFIGHTER 2 turns up the music again and drowns out all outside noise of the fire, while the family cries and shouts hysterically. 

**Optionally the fire truck starts on fire but FIREFIGHTER 2 is too relaxed and distracted to notice.

Curtain.

 

Gillian Corsiatto hails from Alberta, Canada, right between two major cities: Calgary and Edmonton. She has been a lifelong writer, and her first book Duck Light was published in 2021. Since then, she has been motivated to keep at her writing and further it into an established career, even branching out into writing for the theatre. Currently, a sequel to Duck Light is underway, but she still pumps out scripts and short stories whenever an idea creeps into her mind. You can find her mostly at her writing desk, probably with a cat in her lap, and maybe even spinning a fidget spinner. She thinks those are still cool.

 

Featured image by Kirk Thornton.

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