|“||I am not your friend. I am not your teacher. I am not a parent or guardian or anyone who will take care of you. I am your chaperone, and you are my apprentice, a word which here means 'person who works under me and does absolutely everything I tell him to do.'"||”|
— Theodora to Lemony Snicket
S. Theodora Markson is a V.F.D. chaperone. Lemony Snicket is apprenticed to her in All the Wrong Questions, finishing his apprenticeship at the end of Why Is This Night Different from All Other Nights?.
Ranked last out of 52 V.F.D. chaperones, Theodora is the least successful chaperone available to be apprenticed to. Lemony intentionally chose the last-ranked apprentice in hopes that they would be less attentive of his actions and give him more freedom to do what he really wanted.
Incredibly self-confident, S. Theodora Markson tends to assume that she always has the upper hand in her investigations. Often prone to following false leads and elevating clues that are intended to mislead, Theodora is often the source of Snicket's frustrations, and she regularly reminds her apprentice of his place.
Despite her seemingly arrogant personality, there are certain rare moments that fully showed her as somewhat bearable and could even be considered kind, such as at the end of chapter 12 of the first book, where she offered her hand and removed the probation of Lemony Snicket, which could be seen as an act of gratitude.
She has wild hair that gives brushes nightmares and drives a green roadster that has seen better days.
Who Could That Be at This Hour?
She doesn't have a particularly strong role in the book, although she gives Lemony advice on his mission to find the Bombinating Beast statue.
During an argument in which she gave Lemony flack for not being professional enough, he reminded her she was ranked last, and she may have almost slapped him, but their conversation was interrupted before Lemony could find out.
When Did You See Her Last?
To be written.
Shouldn't You Be in School?
To be written.
Why Is This Night Different from All Other Nights?
In this book, she is accused of murdering Dashiell Qwerty.
- She has an unnamed sister who is mentioned in File Under: 13 Suspicious Incidents.
- Before becoming Lemony Snicket's chaperone, her last apprentice was Bertrand Baudelaire.
- It is unknown what the S in her name stands for, though Snicket enjoys prying in jest. Whenever a character asks her what the 'S' stands for she replies with different words or sentences that start with S. Her first name is never revealed.
- A theory is that the "S" in her name stands for Sunny, and Sunny Baudelaire was named after her. The Baudelaire family has a tradition to name newborns after deceased friends and family, so Theodora may be deceased.
- A theory is that the "S" stands for "Solitude". In the final chapter of Why Is This Night Different from All Other Nights?, Lemony Snicket writes, "It was a mystery, like what the S stood for in Theodora's name. I kept walking, with nothing but solitude for company. 'Solitude' is a fancy name for being all by yourself. It's not a bad name, I thought." This theory is supported by Daniel Handler saying "it's right there in the text" when asked what the "S" stands for in an interview.
- A theory is that the "S" stands for "Sensible", and her name could be thought of as "the Sensible Theodora Markson". She constantly tells Snicket to be sensible, so it is like her catchphrase.
- Who Could That Be at This Hour?
- When Did You See Her Last?
- Shouldn't You Be in School?
- Why Is This Night Different from All Other Nights?
- File Under: 13 Suspicious Incidents
- "You already said you were sorry. Don't repeat yourself. It's not only repetitive, it's redundant, and people have heard it before. It's not proper. It's not sensible." (to Lemony Snicket)