How staggering to believe people such as Count Olaf or Jacques Snicket once belonged to the very same organization! Surely it would take an immensely traumatic event, a dramatically expanded argument to lead likewise individuals on such different paths. On one side, a cohort of thieves, murderers and arsonists, determined on stealing fortunes. On the other side, a secretive alliance of researchers and experts evading persecution. Did they ever have anything in common?
“It’s complicated and confusing,” Olivia
explained. “They say that long ago it was simple and quiet, but that might be a legend. There was a schism in
V.F.D., a great big fight between many of the members, and since then it’s been hard
for me to know what to do. [The Carnivorous Carnival, Chapter Seven]
There is something quite absurd about this conflict. Actually, Kit and Dewey believe the Schism happened when they were about four years old, which means that most of the adults of "A Series of Unfortunate Events” are probably too young to remember it anyway. The origins of the Schism are so obscure they border on mythology: children follow their elders’ instructions without questions, and with each generation, more and more knowledge is lost. Does anyone actually understand what the Schism involves at this point?
Let’s try to move beyond the fog of war and carefully analyze the strategic dynamics of VFD before and after the Schism. Only then will we propose a frightening theory on the reasons which led to this great divide… after the cut.