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detectivefernald  asked:

Hey, great blog you have here! What happened with Esme Squalor and Beatrice Baudelaire at Esme's tea party? Is what happened there the reason the mansion burned down? Also, why did Esme have what appeared to be Beatrice's snow suit in TSS?

Esme is repeatedly stated to harbor an obsessional vendetta against Beatrice because she stole the sugar bowl from her.

“But I want to steal from you,” Esmé said. “I want to steal from you the way Beatrice stole from me.”
[The Ersatz Elevator, Chapter Ten]

“Then you know all about the sugar bowl,” Esmé said, “and what’s inside. You know how important that thing was, and how many lives were lost in the quest to find it. You know how difficult it was to find a container that could hold it safely, securely, and attractively. You know what it means to the Baudelaires and what it means to the Snickets.” She took one sandaled step closer to Dewey, and stretched out one silver fingernail-the one shaped like an S-until it was almost poking him in the eye. “And you know,” she said in a terrible voice, "that it is mine. “
“Not anymore,” Dewey said.
“Beatrice stole it from me! ” Esmé cried.
“There are worse things,” Dewey said, “than theft.”
At this, the girlfriend gave the sub-sublibrarian a chuckle that made the Baudelaires’ blood run cold. “There certainly are,” she said, and strode toward Carmelita Spats.

[The Penultimate Peril, Chapter Nine]

I suppose stealing her snowsuit is one of the many ways she has decided to exact retribution:

“Yes ma'am,” Hugo said, “and, if you don’t mind my saying so, that’s a very handsome snowsuit you are wearing.”
The villainous girlfriend turned all the way around to show off her outfit from every angle. Sunny looked up from her cooking and noticed that the letter B was sewn onto the back of it, along with the eye insignia. “I’m glad you like it, Hugo,” Esmé said. “It’s stolen.”
Count Olaf glanced at Sunny and quickly stepped in front of his girlfriend. “What are you staring at, toothy?” he asked. “Are you done making breakfast?”

[The Slippery Slope, Chapter Six]

This does lead us to ask where Esme got that snowsuit, at any rate. We know that Beatrice has undertaken missions in the Mortmain Mountains before, so maybe she got it from the V.F.D. headquarter at 667 Dark Avenue, which Beatrice used to frequent? Either that or she got it from Olivia Caliban, who collects all kinds of information related to the Baudelaire parents.

We don’t much about what happened at Esme’s tea party but it appears she and Beatrice had never met before. This is probably how she managed to steal the precious artefact in the first place.

And I would hop like nobody has ever hopped before, if I could somehow go back to that terrible Thursday, and stop Beatrice from attending that afternoon tea where she met Esmé Squalor for the first time.
[The Hostile Hospital, Chapter Two]

I might be doing something I enjoy–walking along the promenade deck of a ship, or looking through a telescope at the aurora borealis, or wandering into a bookstore and placing my books on the highest place in the shelf, so that no one will be tempted to buy and read them–when I will suddenly remember this thing I did, and think to myself, Was it really necessary? Was it absolutely necessary to steal that sugar bowl from Esmé Squalor?
[The Hostile Hospital, Chapter Six]

And it’s very possible the burning of the Baudelaire mansion had something to do with the sugar bowl, as the object was seen on location the day before the fire:

Third-hand reports suggest that just after the sugar bowl was placed on the table, Sunny shrieked, “Funcoot!”, which either meant “My gums hurt!” or “I believe I may have seen someone lurking outside.”
[The Dismal Dinner, Part Tree]

Near the end of the meal, baby Sunny Baudelaire looked out the window and began to cry with a clarity and force that would soon characterize her ability to bite things. Her cries alarmed a number of guests who were in the process of passing around the sugar bowl.
[The Dismal Dinner, Part Four]

We also have to keep in mind that the sugar bowl ended up in the V.F.D. headquarters of the Mortmain Mountains, the same place the survivor of the Baudelaire fire was supposed to be found.

detectivefernald  asked:

Why did Jerome marry Esme? I get that Esme was doing this for selfish reasons, but why would a kind hearted Jerome marry a selfish Esme?

Jerome is without ambiguity the least confrontational person on Earth. It would take little effort for Esme to guilt-trip him into marrying her. Geraldine Julienne told Esme where Jerome used to take his meals (the Veritable French Dinner) and she “accidentally” bumped into him there. It’s stated that they married “after only one evening together” so it’s definitely a shotgun wedding. Maybe she even used an actual shotgun to make her case more eloquent.

She does however seem to have taken a few careful steps to ensure Jerome would have no objections to a wedding. For example she used to be in charge of the Quagmire estate and never tried to steal Duncan’s and Isadora’s fortune, or at least not until after “The Miserable Mill”. Given that neither Arthur Poe nor Jerome is aware of that particular piece of information, it’s actually plausible she gave away the estate’s management to somebody else in order to cover her tracks.