Where’s Stella in ‘Chicago Fire’ Season 10? Why Severide Is Worried

Taylor Kinney as Kelly Severide in Chicago Fire
Spoiler Alert

[Warning: The below contains MAJOR spoilers for Chicago Fire Season 10 Episode 8 “What Happened at Whiskey Point?”]

When Captain Matt Casey’s (Jesse Spencer) departure left command of Truck 81 open on Chicago Fire, the assumption was that Stella Kidd (Miranda Rae Mayo) would take over since she’d been waiting for an open spot at a house since passing the lieutenant’s test. But she’s off doing stuff for her “Girls on Fire” program. And now, her fiancé, Kelly Severide (Taylor Kinney), has finally gotten honest about how he feels.

The first hint that Stella’s trip doesn’t yet have an end date was that the current lieutenant on Truck 81, Jason Pelham (Brett Dalton), told Severide he could be with them “maybe a long while” with “the lieutenant that Boden [Eamonn Walker] wanted … involved in some kind of side project.” And it was clear during “What Happened at Whiskey Point?” that she’s busy when Severide had to leave her a voicemail.

“I just want to make sure you’re keeping Boden in the loop about your furlough and everything like when you’re planning on coming back, ’cause I’m not sure he’s really aware,” he said. “Just give me a call when you get a break, love you.”

Taylor Kinney as Kelly Severide, Miranda Rae Mayo as Stella Kidd in Chicago Fire

Adrian S. Burrows Sr./NBC

But as we’d come to learn in the final scene of the episode, as he took Lieutenant Christopher Herrmann (David Eigenberg) up on his offer of a cigar chat (like he used to do with Casey), Boden isn’t the (only) one unaware of Stella’s plans to return. (And considering how he snapped at Herrmann earlier, he’s clearly stressed.)

“I don’t know when Stella’s coming back,” Severide admitted. “She tells me, but then it changes. And I know Girls on Fire really means a lot to her, it’s just we’ve never had this much distance between us. … I don’t know what’s going on with her, or where we’re going to be when she does come back.”

The good news is we know we’ll see her soon, “before the end of this calendar year,” showrunner Derek Haas told TVLine. But does that mean she’ll be back for good? And even if she is, how will we see this trip impact her relationship with Severide and spot on Truck 81? Pelham does seem like the kind of stand-up guy (after learning about his past and why he’s been floating) that he’d step aside for her if asked, but will the spot still be hers to claim when she returns? (We’re assuming yes.) After all, even Blake Gallo (Alberto Rosende) is warming up to Pelham.

Then there’s the upcoming “Stellaride” wedding, for which there isn’t a date just yet. And before they get married, there are clearly some things they need to discuss, based on what Severide told Herrmann. While we have faith we’ll see the couple say “I do,” likely this season, things are likely going to be complicated between them when they first reunite. There has to be a reason why Severide expressed those doubts to Herrmann rather than just having the two in touch constantly and in a solid place while she’s away. Let’s just hope this is a stall to hold off the wedding until May.

Chicago Fire, Wednesdays, 9/8c, NBC