As the winter storm continues to pummel Austin, the now separated members of the 126 fight to save lives (to the detriment of their own in some cases) in the all new season 3, episode 2 of 9-1-1 Lone Star, “Thin Ice.”
A Dangerous Ice Rescue
Stuck at home a young boy, Abe, calls his mother to ask if he can go outside and play hockey with other kids. His asthma makes that impossible, but as time goes by he finally ventures outside just as the other kids leave. Playing hockey alone his asthma flairs and Abe falls through the ice. The woman who found the boy in episode 1 speaks with Grace who is able to route T.K., Tommy, and Nancy to him. Abe has been under for over five minutes, but they are determined to improvise without firefighters equipment to reach him. Tying bedsheets together, T.K. crawls carefully out on the ice as Tommy and Nancy hold the other end. In a shocking twist no one saw coming, the ice gives way and T.K. goes under just as he grabs Abe.
With T.K. and Abe on land again they discover in this series of unfortunate events that the rig has slid down an embankment (nice parking T.K.). They grab their equipment and improvise in the bystander’s van instead. Nancy and Tommy work on Abe with an ECMO, and they are able to revive him as the machine warms up and oxygenates his blood. Another ambulance arrives to transport Abe. T.K. steps out of the way while Tommy relays the information, but when they turn around T.K. has vanished. Suffering severe hypothermia, he’s wandered away and helpfully left a clothing trail. They find a very naked T.K. who only manages to walk a few yards before collapsing with no heartbeat.
Carlos arrives at the hospital thanks to Nancy’s little white lie that T.K. asked to see him. Abe’s mother finds Nancy to let her know he’s expected to make a full recovery. The same may not be true for T.K. who is on a ventilator in the ICU, unconscious and essentially on his death bed.
A Hill Country Cabin Rescue
Owen returns to his cabin with the man Buttercup found, (good boy Buttercup) just as Sadie also arrives with hot toddies. He’s suffered a deep cut that nicked an artery and Owen has no choice but to cauterize the wound with a hot fire poker to stop the bleeding. Naturally this is when the man, who only speaks Spanish, regains consciousness to find two people holding him down with a fire poker. Not alarming at all, right? Without a phone, Owen and Sadie assemble her ex’s radio. Thankfully, help is on the way but it’s a long wait before anyone can reach them with resources stretched so thin.
Sadie speculates that the man is here illegally, their cabin location is close to a smuggling route. As they chat, the man runs away into the white out conditions. Owen immediately heads out to find him. While searching Owen stumbles right off a small cliff, they don’t call it the hill country for nothing. He wakes in a barn filled with illegal migrants taking shelter from the storm. Elena, who speaks English, tells Owen they were in transit when the coyotes tried to steal everything from them. They fought back but there was a crash so they ran. That’s when the man Owen was looking for stumbles into the barn waving a gun, the coyote these people have been fleeing.
126 Members Save One of Their Own
Back at the collapsed church, both Paul and the volunteer, Lindsey, are still missing. The 122 Captain wants to play things by the book but Judd talks him into letting them carefully search for Paul and Lindsey. As the 129 rolls out, Mateo requests to stay with the 122 and search for Paul. As they search, Paul is thankfully uninjured inside a void space where he finds Lindsey with minor injuries. Paul’s radio malfunctions but luckily Lindsey is handy with electronics and fixes it. He’s able to radio Mateo and Judd while Grace directs them to his location.
As they wait, Lindsey reveals she feels like it’s her fault they are trapped. When the roof caved she froze rather than running. Paul reassures her that’s not true, but it’s short-lived comfort when the water pipes burst and thoroughly soak them. Judd perfectly sums up the now dire situation here and across the city, “An ice storm hit Texas and this place ain’t ever been weather-proofed.”
Clever as always, Paul finds a trash bag to put Lindsey in to help keep her warm. He also wraps her in his fireman’s jacket, foregoing anything warm for himself. Meanwhile, Judd and Mateo pitch a risk rescue strategy of sledgehammering through a wall to reach them. The 122 Captain rightly senses defeat and approves their method. In an effort to stay awake, Paul prompts them to talk about what pisses them off. Lindsey screams that she hates feeling invisible. As Paul beings to fade, Lindsey demands to know what pisses him off. “Them closing my firehouse, the 126, over some BS!” He shouts back. Paul lists every member of the 126 and why they matter to him just before passing out. Mateo and Judd crashes through the wall in the nick of time, waking Paul up in the process and they are rushed to the hospital.
On the way to the hospital, Judd sweetly makes the firetruck stop at the dispatch center to drop off provisions for Grace while she’s working. In the break room he unbags the english breakfast tea, ginger for her stomach, and cough drops (just in case). Grace is more than a little embarrassed by his actions (but we are all for him spoiling her, they are relationship goals!).
By the end of the episode Owen’s at gunpoint, T.K.’s in the ICU, and we’re still no closer to reuniting the 126. Sadly, fans will have to wait a full two weeks for the next episode! Stay tuned for our continued coverage on 9-1-1 Lone Star, including episodic recaps and more!