Stain'd-by-the-Sea is the main setting for the book series All the Wrong Questions and first appears in Who Could That Be at This Hour? as the setting for which Lemony Snicket's first mission as a neophyte for V.F.D. takes place. It is about a half day's drive from the city.
It once was by the sea, but all the water was pumped away into Killdeer Fields, to save the town. Every now and again a bell rings, and you have to put on a mask to protect yourself from salt lung, although Snicket's chaperone S. Theodora Markson incorrectly states that it is to be able to breathe in depth of the water pressure. The town is "fading", and its major export, ink, is quickly running out, thus vastly slowing the local economy.
Stain'd once had a prolific newspaper, The Stain'd Lighthouse, but ever since the ink began to run out is has been unable to be published. Much of Stain'd is in ruins, or slowly being destroyed, but some places still withstand, including The Lost Arms, Mallahan Lighthouse, the Public Library and the Police Station, Ellington's shack in Handkerchief Heights, the Sallis Mansion and Black Cat Coffee among others. It is located on an island, and the buildings were once elegant, but now are broken and battered.
The Clusterous Forest is formed on the edge of the town, next to the lighthouse. Near this and the outskirts of the town are sloping hills covered in trees. Most of the building are uninhabited. The sidewalks are cracked, and most businesses are abandoned. Whole neighborhoods are vacant, the most vacant being Blotted Boulevard. Old bottles and cans litter the streets, and the Sallis Mansion is smack in the middle of the town. There is also a huge giant pen shaped building at the far edge of the town, called Ink Inc. where the Knight Family currently lives and operates the inking industry. There is only one open restaurant, a small diner called Hungry's, which is operated by Hungry Hix and her nephew Jake Hix. There is a building that is labeled 'City Hall' that doubles as a police station and a library. All business that are still open are fairly empty. There used to be a number of schools near the town, but now they have closed. There is never anyone on the streets of Stain'd-by-the-Sea, so there is nobody that Lemony can ask for directions. The building are all boarded on most streets. Some neighborhoods have been knocked down completely. They are now nothing but flat empty lots.
Ink is Stain'd-by-the-Sea's most famous export. Needles took it out of wells and into barrels. The ink is made by octopi, distributed when they are frightened. The ink industry is not as popular anymore, with the inkwells drying up. There are still barrels of ink and ink producing machines lining the edge of the town. And although there isn't much ink left, due to the lack of octopus schools, few workers still produce ink. The needle machine work quietly and efficiently. The ink produced by Stain'd-by-the-Sea is said to make the darkest most permanent stains.
- Ink Inc.
- The Stain'd Lighthouse
- Colophon Clinic
- City Hall
- The Lost Arms
- Black Cat Coffee
- The Sallis Mansion
- Public Library
- Police Station
- Clusterous Forest
- Partial Foods
- Wade Academy
- 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