Grey's Anatomy Universe Wiki

When life forces us to do something impossible an explosion happens inside the body. A rush of hormones blasts through us, making us stronger, making us faster. Biology overrides fear and that makes the impossible possible. Nobody wakes up thinking: "My world will explode today. My world will change." Nobody thinks that. But, sometimes, it happens. Sometimes, we wake up, we face our fears. We take them by the hand. And we stand there waiting, hoping, ready for anything.

Ring of Fire is the twenty-fourth and final episode of the thirteenth season and the 293rd overall episode of Grey's Anatomy.

Short Summary[]

The doctors' lives are at risk after a dangerous patient escapes the hospital room. Alex must make a difficult decision in his relationship with Jo. Meredith has big news for Nathan that brings things to a turning point.

Full Summary[]

Meredith arrives at the hospital. After parking her car, she starts walking to the entrance when she witnesses the explosion.

Arizona and Eliza, who are making out in a car in the parking lot, witness the explosion as well.

Inside, Maggie and Jackson hear the blast as the building shakes and the lights flicker. As the alarm starts, Maggie hopes this is a drill, because the alternative is that it has something to do with the rapist. Given the large boom, Jackson figures it's real. He finds that the doors are unlocked and runs off to find Stephanie. Maggie urges him to be careful.

Meredith, Eliza, and Arizona run up to the entrance, but they are stopped by police officers. They already reported the explosion and refuse to let them in because of the lockdown. Bailey comes in and says they're cleared since fire in the hospital trumps rapist on the loose. That's the first Meredith hears about the rapist.

Bailey, Richard, and a firefighter are informing the hospital staff. They need to evacuate patients in immediate danger. Unaffected areas, such as the ER, stay put. Firefighter Carol will direct the staff to the most urgent areas while April will set out a holding area by parking lot 1. Meredith adds that patients who can walk have to take care of themselves while Richard says the elevators aren't working. A police officer tells Bailey they're keeping an active sweep at the exits. Bailey prays to God that she won't have to tell Catherine that she burned the hospital to the ground.

Jackson is running down a busy hallway while calling out for Stephanie. He enters a room and finds the ceiling starting to catch fire. He closes the door and runs off.

In the ER, Meredith finds Maggie, who heard they are trying to contain the fire near the CCU, while it's spread to the OR floor. Maggie figured she'd help with evac. Meredith says she needs to talk to Nathan and asks her to let him know that if she sees him. As Maggie walks off, Meredith overhears Gary, Erin's father, at the ER entrance. He can't show the police officer his ID since his wife upstairs has his wallet. Gary tells Meredith that Erin is missing again.

Erin's leg is trapped under a machine while the room around her is on fire. She calls out for Stephanie, who wakes up in what's left of the lab. Stephanie sits up and notices her left arm's burned. She tells a panicking Erin to hang on.

Richard's transporting a patient and introduces her to Isaac and Ben, who'll carry her down the stairs. They promise her a smooth ride and lift her from the bed. They enter the stairwell. Eliza comes over and says she's told all dispatchers to divert all traumas. Jackson comes over and asks if they have seen Edwards, while Meredith says she's looking for a missing girl. Jackson says Stephanie's with the rapist patient. He starts to leave, but Eliza asks if he's alerted the police about Edwards. He hasn't, so he asks her to do that. Eliza thinks they should focus on patients, per hospital protocol. Meredith tells them about Erin and goes to look for her, ignoring Eliza. Richard reminds her to tell the police about Edwards and walks off.

Owen wakes up at Meredith's house, where Amelia is instructing the babysitter. Amelia tells Owen that an explosion at the hospital rendered the helipad unavailable, so they need to drive up to Madigan. They have to be there when Megan lands. They suggested Owen brings photographs, since Megan might not remember. Owen will go to the house to pick some up.

Stephanie tells Erin not to be afraid while she starts looking around for a fire extinguisher. Erin asks if the man's gone. Stephanie says he is and tells Erin to keep her face low. Erin then tells her about her leg being stuck. Stephanie wets her labcoat using water from a broken sink tap and throws it on the ground to clear a path through the fire.

Stephanie lifts the machine from Erin's leg, but stops doing so when she notices the bleeding. Stephanie starts looking around for supplies as the fire continues to spread. Stephanie tells Erin she's the best surgeon in here so she lucked out. She returns with a Bunsen burner gas tube and some other supplies. She ties off Erin's leg and assures Erin they'll figure it out. Erin admits she wants her mom. So does Stephanie. There's another minor explosion in the lab, but Stephanie assures Erin that she's got her. Stephanie tells Erin she was in the hospital a lot as a kid, and they would do a lot of stuff that hurt her. She hated it, but she'd clench her fists as tight as she could. It'd hurt, but the more she thought about the fists, the less she thought about anything else. Or she'd scream her head off, that also helped. Since Stephanie warns her that the next step of tending to the leg will hurt, Erin clenches her fists. Stephanie then uses a clamp to clamp off an artery in the wound, leading to Erin screaming.

Outside, April is using a megaphone to give instructions to organize the evacuated patients, including the critical ones. Meanwhile, Meredith is looking for Erin. Alex comes up and asks what's going on. She tells him about the explosion. He sees kids and worries about his patients, but Meredith assures him that given the location of the fire, the kids should be fine. She asks him about Jo's husband. He says the trip was a waste. She asks him to help look for Erin and runs off.

Ben informs April about the patient he carried. He's out of breath and confesses that a fire is his worst nightmare. She tells him to pretend this is a parking lot barbeque. She offers him to take a minute, but he says he's good and goes back in. April then summons Maggie for the patient. Maggie says they'll get her to the triage zone and hooked up to an ECG machine. April asks Maggie if she saw Jackson. Maggie says he went to look for Stephanie. April says that's typical. She recalls the time he ran into a burning bus. Running into fires is what he does.

Erin is still screaming. Stephanie loosens the tube and sees there's no blood. Erin moves away from the machine and Stephanie helps her get up. As they move, a burning beam falls down from the ceiling and blocks their path. Stephanie gets a blanket, wets it, and also wets her hair. She picks up Erin and puts the wet blanket around them. She instructs Erin to take a deep breath, and then jumps through the flames.

They burst into the stairwell. The floors below are on fire, so they have to up to the roof. Stephanie has Erin put her arms around her and they slowly walk up the stairs. As Stephanie puts her arm on the railing, it turns out to be severely burned. Stephanie looks up at the many flights of stairs left.

Jackson runs into a hallway filled with smoke. He's still looking for Stephanie but finds a coughing patient instead. He offers to help the woman. She's in severe pain due to her kidney stones. He wants to pick her up, but she declines, claiming she's perfectly capable of walking. Jackson ignores her and picks her up anyway.

Meredith's on the OR floor, where smoke begins to appear. She finds Nathan still operating in OR 2. She tells him the fire's on the floor above them. He says he's in the middle of a lobectomy and he refuses to leave a patient open on the table. Meredith asks BokHee to get her gloved, figuring they'll be out faster if they work together. A firefighter comes in and they promise to work as fast as they can. They need 15 minutes. Meredith tells him about Erin, but they're all already looking for her.

Jackson arrives outside with the patient he carried. He puts her on a gurney and then goes to get an oxygen mask. Maggie and April come over to yell at him for being heroic. April reminds him he's a surgeon, not a firefighter. He yells he was trying to save Edwards. Maggie tells him not to yell at the mother of his child. Jackson tells them that he's fine. Maggie takes his hand and directs the oxygen mask back to his mouth. April notices this and the way Maggie and Jackson look at each other.

Owen and Amelia are driving. Owen says Megan used to call him Eeyore because war made him grumpy. Amelia says anyone would get grumpy. Owen says not Megan. She was always happy and joking. He doesn't know what to say to Megan. Amelia says he will when he sees her. Owen says she was found 10 miles from where he was stationed. She was there the whole time. Amelia says it doesn't feel real right now, but it will once he sees her.

Stephanie and Erin finally arrive at the door to the roof. She tries to open the door, but then realizes it requires her key card, which is missing. They look down and see that the fire has continued to spread upwards. Erin thinks they can make it, but Stephanie sits down. Erin realizes they are stuck. Stephanie denies this. They'll sit here with the blanket over their heads, so they'll be fine. Erin says her mother always tells her not to pull the covers over her head when things get scary. You put on the lights and the scary goes away. Stephanie says that's usually right, but as a doctor, she knows the blanket is their best chance now. Erin sits down in front of her. Stephanie tries to wrap the blanket around them, but it's too small. She then uses it to wrap Erin. Erin protests, saying the scary will get Stephanie. Stephanie says she has other ways to keep the scary out. Stephanie looks down and then sees her key card a couple of floors down. She gets up to go get it. Erin begs her not to leave her. Stephanie promises she'll be right back. She reminds Erin about the fists and runs down. Erin looks after her, but she soon disappears in the smoke. After a few moments, she also can't hear Stephanie's footsteps anymore.

All Erin can see is smoke now. She thinks Stephanie is gone, but she eventually returns with her key card.

Meredith and Nathan have taken their patient outside. He's heavily coughing so Meredith asks Maggie to take over. Meredith gets him an oxygen mask.

Stephanie and Erin are up on the roof, both heavily coughing as well. Stephanie puts Erin down and goes to the edge to scream for help, but no one hears her. Erin calls for Stephanie and then passes out. Stephanie checks her wound and re-attaches the clamp. She asks Erin to stay with her and starts CPR all the while screaming for help.

After an ambulance takes off with her patient, Maggie walks up to Jackson and instructs him to put his mask back on. She informs him that no one has seen Stephanie. Jackson calls over Bailey and asks her about Stephanie, but Bailey has no idea what he's talking about. As Jackson says he asked Minnick to tell the police, Bailey turns to Eliza and asks her. Eliza admits she forgot because she had patients. Ben, who has overheard the conversation, says he saw Edwards earlier with the liver lac guy. Bailey asks where, but he doesn't know for sure.

Ben's looking at the hospital floorplan, but he doesn't know which hallway exactly. He tells the firefighter Captain it'd be easier if he could just walk in and show, but she objects since the fire hasn't been fully contained yet. As the firefighter Captain and a police officer discuss this, Ben fetches a firefighter jacket from the truck and runs inside, followed by the police offers and firefighters.

Ben and his following arrive in the right hallway. He figures they entered the stairwell and does the same.

They arrive on the floor of the explosion, where the firefighters are examining a burned body. Ben takes a closer look.

Stephanie is still performing CPR on Erin while screaming for help.

Ben tells the firefighters that the body is too tall to be Edwards. He looks around and sees blood in the corner. They follow the trail of blood into the stairwell, where it leads upwards.

The group finally arrives on the roof. Stephanie yells what she needs for Erin. As the firefighters go get the stuff she requested, she asks Ben if they took the scenic route.

Stephanie's still performing CPR on Erin as they wheel her into the ER. Eliza, Richard, and Bailey jump in to help. The OR floor is inaccessible, so they need to treat her here. Stephanie says she deepfried a rapist and dove through a wall of fire. She didn't do that just so this girl can die. They need to continue saving this girl and she also needs Minnick to get out of her face. Bailey sides with Stephanie and announces the ER is now an OR.

Bailey and Richard are operating on Erin, who has returned to a sinus rhythm. Her leg is still cyanotic so Richard contemplates amputation, but Stephanie, who's holding Erin's hand, tells him to save the leg so she has no reminder of this day. They'll need to do a graft and put in a shunt.

Stephanie stays with Erin as the surgery continues.

Jackson comes in and Bailey informs him they are preparing for a graft. He then notices Stephanie's burns, but she refuses to have him look at them. He will make sure she says hydrated, though. April comes in to check. Ben reads her vitals. Erin's finally stable, meaning she'll be fine. Bailey tells Stephanie it's time to get herself back now. Stephanie faints, but Jackson catches her. April and Ben help him put her on a gurney.

Meredith joins Nathan in an ambulance, where he's still using an oxygen mask. Meredith wants to make sure he can breathe for what she has to tell him. He takes a deep breath and she listens to his breath sounds, which are fine. Meredith recalls the time they talked about their dream where Derek and Megan come back. She says they found Megan. She's alive. Nathan stammers that that's not funny. Meredith says the Army called Owen this morning. He breaks and grabs the oxygen mask. Meredith comforts him.

Amelia and Owen have arrived at Madigan, where they're greeted by a Lieutenant and a Colonel. Owen blanks out as they're talking. They start walking, but in his mind, he stays behind and watches them go. The Lieutenant talks about ways Megan may communicate and advises them to avoid triggers, but Owen doesn't hear him.

Catherine is meeting with Bailey, Richard, and Eliza. Catherine wonders why it took them so long to find Stephanie and Erin. Eliza admits she forgot to tell the police since she was doing her job. If anyone could follow protocol around here, Stephanie would be fine right now, because then she would have been in counseling. Bailey yells that Erin would be dead now. Chief Bailey then tells Eliza there's no place for her at the hospital any longer. She keeps clinging to procedures and protocols and can't see when to let go of them in order to save the life of a patient. Bailey knows when to do that, and so does Stephanie, because they were taught right, by Richard. This is not a factory that turns out surgical robots. They make thinking, feeling, human doctors. And they will teach them right.

In the ER, Maggie approaches April and apologizes for yelling at Jackson earlier. April says he was being an idiot and almost died. Maggie thinks it was out of line since he's her baby's father, but they were talking earlier when the alarm went off. April tells Maggie that Jackson has feelings for her. She can tell when he likes someone, and she can feel that Maggie likes him, too. So Maggie should tell him. She heads out for the arriving ambulance.

Arizona catches up with Eliza and asks to go home and have sex before sleeping off the long day they've had. Eliza says she has to pack up, since she just got fired. She walks off, leaving a speechless Arizona.

DeLuca is treating Stephanie in the burn unit. She's in a lot of pain, but she refuses to have morphine turned up. Richard comes in and asks her how she's feeling. She's had better days. Richard says they're all here to get her back. It will be a while before she steps back into an OR, though. Stephanie has something to say about that. She's spent her entire life in hospitals, and she thinks it's time she go and see something that's not the inside of a hospital. She needs to travel and explore and hike and breathe. She wants to breathe it all in, away from the hospital. She wants to be away from saving other people's lives and go live her own. She tells Richard that he changed her life. He taught her how to take her past and find her path. She thanks him for that, because she has found it. He asks what this means. She says she quits. She then allows Andrew to turn up the morphine.

Meredith and Nathan are still in the ambulance. He has a lot of questions, but she only knows that it really is Megan and that they are taking her to Madigan Medical Center. Nathan gets up and walks off while asking her to contact someone about his patients. Meredith says they'll take care of it. She wants to know if he's okay to drive. He can only think about the fact that Megan's alive. He picks up Meredith while smiling. He then realizes who he's talking to and apologizes. She tells him not to do that. If it were Derek, she'd already be gone. He says he can drive. She tells him to go. He gets in his car and drives off. She watches after him.

Amelia and Owen watch the helicopter land. Owen takes Amelia's hand as Megan's unloaded. Megan's wheeled towards Owen while Meredith's voice over talks about being ready for anything.


Main Cast[]

Guest Stars[]



Medical Notes[]

Erin Miller[]

  • Diagnosis:
    • Lacerated leg
  • Treatment:
    • Tourniquet
    • Surgery

Erin's leg was impaled by a fallen piece of equipment. Stephanie started to lift it, but Erin started bleeding, so Stephanie put a tourniquet on her leg and tried to stop the bleeding as best she could before getting Erin out. Once she was out, they went up to the roof, where Erin fainted from blood loss. Stephanie started CPR and waited for help. They took her downstairs, where they operated on her leg. They were able to use a graft to save her leg from amputation.


  • Diagnosis:
  • Treatment:
    • Heparin

Sondra was carried out of the hospital after the fire started. She was one day post-op on a CABG. Maggie checked her out outside and said her chest sounded good and they'd hook her up to an EKG.

Stephanie Edwards[]

  • Diagnosis:
    • Burns
  • Treatment:
    • Burn care

Stephanie had severe burns to her arms, face, and neck from the explosion. She refused treatment while Erin was being treated, but once Erin was out of the woods, she collapsed. They put her on a gurney and treated the burns.


  • Diagnosis:
    • Kidney stones
  • Doctors:
  • Treatment:

Cheryl had kidney stones. She had trouble walking out of the hospital, so Jackson carried her.

Nathan's Patient[]

  • Diagnosis:
  • Treatment:
    • Lobectomy

Nathan was doing a lobectomy during the fire. Meredith stepped in to help get him out more quickly. They finished the surgery and evacuated.

Jackson Avery[]

  • Diagnosis:
    • Smoke inhalation
  • Treatment:
    • Oxygen

Jackson was given oxygen after inhaling smoke.

Nathan Riggs[]

  • Diagnosis:
    • Smoke inhalation
  • Doctors:
  • Treatment:
    • Oxygen

Nathan was given oxygen after leaving the building.


Song Performer Scene
"Breathe" La'Porsha Renae
  • Amelia and Owen drive to see Megan.
  • Owen tells Amelia about Megan.
  • Stephanie helps Erin up the stairs.
  • The door to the roof is locked and Stephanie realizes she doesn't have the card to get out.
  • Stephanie says they're not stuck. They're going to be fine and puts the blanket over them.
  • Erin says that's not what her mom told her to do when she's scared, but Stephanie convinces her to get under the blanket.
"10,000 Miles" Lily Kershaw
  • They put Stephanie on a gurney and wheel her out.
  • Meredith finds Nathan in an ambulance and he says he's okay.
  • Meredith has him take a few deep breaths before she tells him about Megan.
  • He starts crying and coughing, so she puts his mask back on him.
  • Owen and Amelia enter the army hospital.
  • Owen and Amelia are led to Megan as Owen spaces out.
"Dancing on My Own" Calum Scott
  • Andrew turns up Stephanie's morphine and continues working.
  • Meredith asks Nathan if he's okay and he asks where Megan was.
  • Meredith tells Nathan where Megan is and he smiles and picks Meredith up.
  • He tells her he's sorry, but she says not to be, because she'd already be gone if it were Derek.
  • He gets into his car and leaves.
  • Owen and Amelia watch the helicopter land on the roof. Owen takes Amelia's hand as they unload Megan and wheel her over.

Notes and Trivia[]


Grey's Anatomy 13x24 Promo "Ring of Fire" (HD) Season 13 Episode 24 Promo Season Finale

  • This episode's title originated from the song Ring of Fire, originally sung by Johnny Cash.
  • This episode scored 7.92 million viewers.
  • The table read for this episode took place on March 24, 2017.
  • Sarah Drew wrapped filming on April 4, 2017, while Jessica Capshaw wrapped a day later.
  • This is the last episode to feature Jerrika Hinton as part of the main cast. Initially, the writers were going to kill Stephanie off, but at the time, Krista Vernoff was already in talks to become showrunner for the fourteenth season. Since she was planning on bringing back a lighter and funnier tone, she had the writers decide against killing off Stephanie since she would already have to handle several darker storylines that were set up in the thirteenth season, such as Megan's reappearance and Jo's domestic abuse storyline.
  • This is the first season finale in which not all of the season's main cast appear.
  • The promo pictures show a scene with Alex Karev and Arizona Robbins. That scene seems to have been cut. The same goes for the scene where Stephanie is visited by Erin and her parents in the burn unit.
  • Shonda had been wanting to use Calum Scott's cover of "Dancing On my Own" for the whole season and didn't find the right scenes to pair it with until this finale.
  • A deleted scene shows Alex in Meredith's bedroom after the long day at the hospital. They talk about Megan's nearing arrival and how Meredith feels about it.
  • The original airing of this episode was delayed by one week in the United Kingdom, as the themes were not deemed appropriate at the scheduled date of airing.


Episode Stills[]

Behind the Scenes[]


Maggie: Okay, so, either this is a drill or it's a real fire. And if it's a real fire, then it probably has something to do with the guy, so I vote drill.
Jackson: Despite that large boom you just heard? Really?
Maggie: All right, fine. It's the guy. The bad, escaped rapist guy.

Owen: I don't know what to say. I mean, how do I even... I don't know what... I don't know what to say.
Amelia: You will when you see her. You'll know what to say when you see her.
Owen: They found her 10 miles away from where I was stationed. She was right there the whole time.
Amelia: Owen, your sister is alive, and that doesn't feel real right now, but it will when you see her.

Stephanie: Did you take the scenic route?!

Stephanie: I deep-fried a rapist. I dove through a wall of fire. I did not do all of that so that this little girl could die, okay? I saved her. I saved her. I saved her. I saved her, Dr. Bailey. We need to finish saving her right now, and I need you out of my face!
Eliza: Dr. Bailey!
Bailey: You heard her. Get out of her face.

Eliza: If anyone could follow protocol around here, Edwards would be perfectly fine right now.
Catherine: I'm sorry. What?
Eliza: She was supposed to be in counseling. But Dr. Webber over here decided she should be able to work today. If you hadn't completely undermined me...
Bailey: Then a little girl would be dead! Dr. Minnick, I don't believe that there's a place for you in my hospital any longer.
Catherine: Dr. Bailey, hold on.
Bailey: It's Chief Bailey, and I am not holding on. She is holding on. She is clinging to these procedures and protocols and cannot see when to let go in order to save the life of a patient. A child! I do! I know! Because I was taught right. Dr. Edwards certainly knew, because she was taught right. This is not some factory that turns out surgical robots. We make doctors. Thinking, feeling, human doctors. And we will teach them right.

Maggie: I just wanted to say I'm sorry about earlier. I yelled at Jackson when I shouldn't have.
April: Well, he was an idiot, and he almost died, so.
Maggie: I just meant that, you know, he's your baby's father, and I went too far. I was just mad because he and I had been talking earlier when the alarms went off.
April: Maggie.
Maggie: What?
April: Jackson, he, uh... He likes you. I know him, so I know what that looks like. And he likes you. He has feelings for you.
Maggie: No, he doesn't. Why would you even...
April: Because I have a feeling that you like him, too, so you know what? You should just tell him.

Arizona: You want to go back to my place? Sleep it off? Or maybe do some other stuff before we sleep it off? And by "other things," I mean sex. You want to go have some overly tired sex?
Eliza: I shouldn't. I have to pack up.
Arizona: Pack up what?
Eliza: I just got fired.

Richard: How're you feeling?
Stephanie: I've had better days.
Richard: Your burns are severe. But we are all with you. We are gonna get you back. But it'll be a while before you step in an OR.
Stephanie: Oh, yeah, yeah. Actually, about that. I've spent my whole life in hospitals. My whole life. And I think I need to see everything that's not the inside of a hospital. I need to travel and explore and hike and breathe and breathe... Breathe real air. So deep. I want to breathe it all in, away from the monitors and the blood and the sterile gowns, away from saving other people's lives. I want my own. It's time I live my own. You changed my life, Dr. Webber. You have. You taught me how... You taught me how to take my past and find my path. Thank you. Thank you. I think I found it.
Richard: Which means?
Stephanie: Which means I quit. Okay, DeLuca, turn that morphine up as high as it'll go, please.

Nathan: I'm sorry.
Meredith: Don't. Don't do that. Don't do that. Don't apologize. If this were Derek, I would've already been gone.

See Also[]

A complete overview of this episode's crew can be found here.