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Battles

Participants Episode(s) Result
Winter vs. Qrow "It's Brawl in the Family" Interrupted
Winter's Summoning vs. Weiss "Volume 5 Weiss Character Short" Won
Penny and Winter vs. Cinder "The Enemy of Trust" Lost
Team JNR, Oscar, Emerald and Winter vs. Ironwood "Creation" Won
Winter vs. Ironwood "The Final Word" Won
Winter vs. Cinder "The Final Word" Interrupted

Background

Winter Schnee is Jacques Schnee's eldest child and is Weiss and Whitley Schnee's elder sister. She also appears to be a former student of Atlas Academy, a member of the Atlas Military's Special Operatives Unit and a subordinate of General James Ironwood. When she arrives at Beacon Academy, she says that it has "been a long time", implying she is familiar with the school and has visited it before.

Manga

In Chapter 4 of the manga, Weiss recalls a conversation she once had with Winter that prompted her to realize that the praise she received as a child were only due to her family name and not on her own merits. This spurred Weiss to create her own identity and embrace her own sense of self, just as Winter did.

RWBY

RWBY Investigations

Weiss arrives at Vale's Cross Continental Transmit System tower to contact the Schnee Dust Company's world headquarters in Atlas for information. When doing so, the operator mentions that Winter might be there and offers to patch Weiss through to her, but Weiss declined.

Later after an incident while messing with Roy's Saws in Human Nextwork's Development Labs, an intern had lost the top of their hands and accidentally decapitated two Atlesian Knight-200s while Roy Stallion worked in the modeling room. The intern had their pay removed by Winter Schnee following this.[1]

Episodes Covering These Events

Vytal Festival Tournament

Qrow fights Winter

Winter arrives in Vale during the Vytal Festival following the conclusion of the battle between Teams SSSN and NDGO. When Weiss catches sight of her sister's airship, she becomes overjoyed and hurries off to go meet her. Winter lands in front of Beacon Academy and disembarks, flanked by several Atlesian Knight-200 androids.

Despite Weiss' ecstatic greeting, Winter's initial response is very cold, refusing to tell her sister either the reason for her presence or its duration. She then goes on to criticize Weiss' "novice" performance in the Vytal Festival tournament, refusing to even classify it as a victory. However, after this cold initial exchange, Winter becomes warmer towards Weiss, expressing interest and concern for her well-being, as well as her social life. Weiss accordingly introduces Winter to Ruby, whom she finds "underwhelming" but nonetheless thanks for "taking an interest" in Weiss.

After this exchange, Winter requests a tour of Team RWBY's room, hoping to ensure everything is in order. However, before they can depart, the pair is stopped by Qrow Branwen, who proceeds to insult Winter and her boss, James Ironwood. This proves to be the final straw for Winter, and it leads to her attacking Qrow. As the two go back and forth in their battle, Winter eventually moves in to finish her opponent; however, she is ordered to cease and desist by Ironwood at the last second. As Ozpin and Glynda Goodwitch arrive to break things up, Ironwood leads Winter away.

The two arrive in Ozpin's office, and Winter paces back and forth with anger. When Ozpin, Glynda and Qrow arrive, Winter begins to criticize Qrow's behavior, but she is ordered to leave by Ironwood, who tells her that they will discuss what happened back on his ship.

Winter summons a Beowolf

Later, Winter shares a meal with Weiss in a pavilion. She says she is about to leave Vale because she was sent there only to oversee additional security units for the tournament. When she learns that Weiss is struggling with summoning via glyphs, she gives a short lesson. She creates a glyph with only one hand, and it expands to form a pure white Beowolf. After Weiss fails to summon with a glyph, Winter remarks that if she can't learn, she could always give up and go back home. Where her father could find her work as a receptionist, encouraging her younger sister by appealing to her competitive nature and desire to prove herself.

Winter assumes correctly that Weiss has had problems with their father, so she presents Weiss with two options; Either Weiss could stay in touch with their father and his resources, or she could turn him away and explore as much as she could of both Remnant and herself. The two bid farewell, and Winter leaves Beacon on her airship that night.

Episodes Covering These Events

Stationed in Mistral

Winter, after a few weeks in Mistral, sends word to General Ironwood of a threat in Mistral. She reports about mobilization efforts and sudden spikes in weapon and Dust trade. After some time, General Ironwood calls her back to Atlas as he closes the Kingdom's borders.

Episode(s) Covering These Events

A New Approach

Reunited with her younger sister

After some time, General Ironwood calls Winter back to Atlas as he closes the Kingdom's borders. After her return, Ironwood informs Winter that he's chosen her as a successor to inherent the Winter Maiden's powers. She is tasked with seeing Fria, the current Maiden, regularly to ensure she's the one who obtains the powers.

In Atlas, Winter serves as a personal bodyguard and assistant to Ironwood, delivering messages to the people of Mantle about Atlas' state and otherwise helping him. By the time Ruby's Group makes their way through his closed borders, Ironwood has thought of a new plan to defeat Salem.

After they meet in person, Winter shows immense concern over her younger sister, scolding her for her recklessness. She and Ironwood tell the group of his new plan which involves updating the communication systems of Remnant through Amity Colosseum and revealing the existence of Salem to the world, showing RWBY's group an image of the Amity Communications Tower.

Ironwood assigns Ruby's Group their first mission in Atlas: to secure the Schnee Dust Company Mine #2 alongside the Ace Operatives, which will serve as the launch site of the Amity Communications Tower. The mine itself had to be cleared of Grimm, particularly a Geist that has managed to evade the military's initial sweep. After their success, James, Winter and Penny Polendina have the two student teams gather at Amity Colosseum, where they promotes the teams to official Huntsmen and Huntresses, much to their surprise, throwing the students a small celebration party before taking their leave.

Winter introduces Weiss to Fria

As Ruby's Group continues their preparations to get the Communications Tower ready and hone their skills, Winter works closely with Weiss to catch up on missing time and train her Summoning. After an exercise, Weiss says that she has had to move forward from the Schnee name, to which Winter replies that eschewing the Schnee name is the "most beneficial" thing that she has ever done. Winter recommends Weiss join with Ironwood, but Weiss is ambivalent. Winter comments that Ironwood believes his actions to be right, to which Weiss responds that everyone believes so. Winter insists that Ironwood is not keeping secrets from her and Weiss asks whether she can be sure. Winter seems affected by this question and does not respond.

Winter brings Weiss to see Fria, the Winter Maiden, and tells her that, due to her frailty, no one but Winter is allowed to see her, lest anyone else become the Winter Maiden when she should die. Weiss questions the burden this puts on Winter, but Winter tells her that she has accepted it as her destiny. Both watch a campaign advertisement by Jacques Schnee, in which he decries Ironwood's boycott of the other Kingdoms and announces his shutdown of all "nonessential" Schnee Dust Company operations. Winter comments that he has provided the spark to set the Kingdom on fire.

Cordially invited

Following a massacre in the Mantle Warehouse, Winter and Clover Ebi discover the person behind the murders frame Ironwood in Mantle is Tyrian Callows, a known serial killer who is now known to be working under Salem. Winter and Clover, along with Ruby, Nora Valkyrie, Lie Ren, and Qrow meet with Ironwood in the headmaster's office, where James informs the group he is close to declaring martial law after Robyn takes to vigilantism. Winter later receives an invitation to a private dinner party at the Schnee Manor where Ironwood is to defend his council position, delivering it to her general.

Episodes Covering These Events

A Banquet at the Schnee Manor

Winter later attended the dinner at the Schnee Manor, as one of Ironwood's main witnesses to give evidence in defending the general's seat in the council. There, Winter defended why Ironwood was keeping secrets regarding the attack in Mantle, citing the Atlesian military was still investigating the incident.

Winter storms off the dining room

After her father implies the kingdom of Atlas lacks any trust in its military, Winter causes an outburst, shouting at Jacques about trust, and he turns it around on Ironwood, criticizing the lack of reasons Ironwood has given the council to trust him. Winter storms out of the room, nearly bumping into a dark-haired waitress on her way out.

Penny finds Winter standing in a hallway, attempting to calm herself down. There, the two of them have a talk about emotions and speaking from the heart. Winter tells Penny she wouldn't understand her reaction, to Penny's dismay, having taken it as not being an emotion she would feel due to a lack of humanity. Noticing this, Winter corrects herself by explaining she should have stayed in line and repressed her feelings given how many bad memories the Manor itself holds. Unable to understand Winter's reasoning, Penny resigns that she doesn't understand and goes back to the dining room.

Upon Weiss' discovery of Jacques' illegal actives with the thought-to-be-dead Arthur Watts, Winter demands he restore the heat to Mantle, to which he responds that he has been locked out of the system. Winter has her men arrest him, and proceeds to help with coordinations to move civilians to safety.

Episodes Covering These Events

Destiny Lost

Winter leads the Atlesian students

During the Battle of Mantle, Winter is stationed in Atlas Academy with instructing students where to go inside the building. She receives a transmission from Ironwood, asking her if she's seen anyone enter the school grounds during the battle, worrying Winter when she claims she hasn't. Ironwood orders her to make sure, and Winter runs into the building, frightened.

Winter meets with Penny at the Atlas Medical Facility, having been ordered to claim the powers of the Winter Maiden from Fria, effectively cutting the Maiden's life short. As they approach the room, Winter and Penny receive word of Salem's impending arrival and Ironwood's plan to raise the city of Atlas further into the sky. Penny is worried over the news of James' plan to leave Mantle to die, though Winter defends his actions as making the hard choice for the rest of the world so that they don't have to make it.

Winter and Penny discuss Ironwood's choice and their humanity

Penny and Winter prepare Fria for the transfer of her powers while discussing how to deal with emotions and how it makes them human. They hear rumblings across the Medical Facility, and Winter hurries out into the now darkened hallway. Red lights that run along the ceiling are flickering on and off, there are broken AK-200s on the floor and the walls have black marks on them. Winter spots Cinder Fall at the end of the hallway, who shoots a fireball at her direction. Winter narrowly avoiding her fire blast, managed to go back into the room and lock the door and draw her weapons only for Cinder to instantly destroy the sealed door to challenge the duo for the powers of the Winter Maiden. She smugly approach the two as she stated how "lucky" she was to have found not only the Winter Maiden but also both of Ironwood's "puppets".

Penny recognizing Cinder as the mastermind for the Fall of Beacon and the person who engineered her first "death", proceeded to question Cinder on her involvement. Cinder then condescendingly and simply state that her death was "unfortunately temporary" and then proceed to threaten her to step aside and let her claim the Maiden powers for herself, otherwise there will be no parts left of her to be salvaged. Undeterred by the Fall Maiden, Penny thus then defiantly brings out her weapons and declare her intentions of fighting against her and stop her quest for power.

Cinder is enraged by Winter and what she represents to the criminal

Penny and Winter begin to attack Cinder, who easily out-duels them in the fight, while venting her frustration to Winter about how the Atlas elite such as herself hoards power from others causing people to hunger for it, including herself. She declares to the two she refuses to starve. Cinder becomes enraged, violently takes the fight outside of the building in a fit of anger. There, she breaks Winter's Aura and returns to the facility while Penny saves Winter from falling to her death.

Once inside, Cinder opens the Aura transfer pod containing Fria and attempts to steal her Winter Maiden powers. However, Fria forces her to retreat by using her Maiden powers to unleash a massive freezing whirlwind. Without her Aura, Winter is unable to safely enter the room, so Penny enters in her stead and calms Fria.

With Fria's whirlwind gone, Winter is able to enter the room and cuts off Cinder's Shadow Hand to stop her from stealing Fria's powers. Although the arm grows back, the agony is enough to cause Cinder to direct her rage toward Winter. Cinder begins to ruthlessly beat down on Winter, severely injuring her to the point of her clothes being left in tatters and heavily bruising and scarring the specialist. Meanwhile, Penny takes Fria's hand and inherits the Winter Maiden powers. As Cinder prepares to kill Winter, she is forced to flee upon seeing Ruby and Weiss, due to a fear of her Silver Eyes.

"What did you do?"

After the light fades, Ruby notices Cinder is now missing, and asks Penny what happened, to which Penny replies that Fria is gone. Winter angrily corrects her with a glare, saying Fria is a part of Penny now. Winter then sits herself up, advising the three to surrender to Ironwood's orders, or to run. Weiss begs her not to, pleading to her sister that she needs help. Winter shouts at Weiss, telling her she's giving her younger sister a head start to escape. Winter calls for help from Atlesian personnel, and Weiss tells her everyone needs to carve out their own path.

Later, Winter sends Ironwood a message, informing him they had lost both the Maiden powers and, as a result, the key to the Atlas Vault, eliciting a scream of rage from the General.

Episodes Covering These Events

Martial Law

Winter in recovery

After being taken to an Atlesian military base, Winter is placed under rest with a black arm brace and is treated by medical technicians. While the Ace Ops cope with Clover Ebi's death, Ironwood privately talks to Winter about the situation at hand. There, she insists to her general that she's fine, and James thanks her for support, telling her that he wouldn't know what to do without her. He informs Winter that Atlas city's Hard-Light defense is keeping them safe from Salem's Grimm horde, although only temporarily. Ironwood ensures to Winter that he will save Atlas no matter the cost, but is interrupted by the arrival of Councilwoman Camilla and Councilman Sleet who are furious with him. Just as Sleet accuses him of being afraid, Ironwood shoots him without a word, much to the shock of Camilla, Winter and most of the Ace-Ops. As Ironwood walks away, Winter is surprised to see Harriet Bree harden herself after what transpired.

After Ironwood and Arthur Watts manage to hack Penny during Ruby's message to the world but are unable to make contact with her, Winter arrives, now wearing an exoskeleton to aid herself. He orders her to take the Ace-Ops in search of Penny, to which she complies.

Later, Winter and her new team receive word of Penny leaving Amity, but seems to be malfunctioning. Seconds later, they intercept an urgent transmission from Jaune Arc, warning of "a large mass of Grimm headed for Mantle." They soon trace his position and confront them in their Manta. But before Winter can give any further orders, the earth trembles beneath them, and a black geyser shoots up from the nearby crevice directly into Atlas.

Episodes Covering These Events

Battle of Atlas

Seeing her home under siege

Winter and the Ace-Ops witness the beginning of Salem's assault on Atlas, and Winter contacts Ironwood telling him they've arrested Jaune, Ren, and Yang. Soon after they're informed by Ironwood of a bomb being made to destroy the monster, and are ordered to deploy it once it's complete. Jaune immediately protests, due to Oscar being trapped inside. He pleads with Winter let him and his team infiltrate the giant Grimm so they can find Oscar, and get him out before the bomb is deployed. After some heated discussion between his team and the Ace-Ops, Winter reluctantly agrees, but warns them should they not escape in time, they will deploy the bomb.

As Jaune and the others are dropped off, Ren tells Winter that he can see she no longer wants to be part of the chaos, which troubles her once they depart.

Later in the evening, she addresses her troops, ordering them to hold the line for the payload they intend to plant within Monstra, or else Atlas will be lost. Once it arrives, she tells her troops to clear a path so they can deploy the bomb. When Marrow protests that Jaune and the others may still be alive, Winter replies that they had their chance. When asked if she intends to say that to Weiss, Winter confirms it with a saddened look, saying it's her duty, and tell him to do the same.

Winter is next seen leading the way towards Monstra, with the Ace-Ops moving the bomb behind her. Suddenly, the gigantic monster explodes, knocking her and the Ace-Ops to the ground and destroying all the Grimm in the vicinity. Once she recovers, she joins Marrow on the hill, who points out Yang's Group was still inside. She looks out to the disintegrating carcass of Monstra, and fears they were killed along with the Grimm. Ironwood contacts her, congratulating her for its destruction, but then orders her back to base as new complications have arisen. Marrow points out that they weren't the ones who destroyed the mobile base, something Winter plans to tell Ironwood personally, as she orders the payload brought back with them.

Episodes Covering These Events

Fallout

She's next seen in Ironwood's office, coughing to get his attention. She tells him that they hadn't deployed the bomb, and brought it back with them. Ironwood sees it as a possible advantage, and then tells them that Qrow and Robyn escaped. Though when he orders Yang's Group be brought to him for leverage against Penny, Winter is reluctant to respond. And then Harriet reveals what she did, which visibly terrifies Winter. She watches as Ironwood glares at her, then smashes his central console in rage. Though when news of SDC ships headed for Mantle is heard, she's stunned as Ironwood suspects it was Weiss' doing.

Winter "arrests" Marrow

Winter later walks beside Ironwood down a hallway, Atlas soldiers making way for the two of them. They meet with the Ace-Ops, and Ironwood orders drones to watch over the payload. When Winter asks his reasoning, he repeats what he said in his earlier broadcast, that if Penny and friends do not agree to his terms, he'll bomb Mantle. The eldest Schnee sibling then watches as Marrow protests, denouncing both Ironwood and his own rank, and Winter immediately moves in to arrest Marrow before he's executed by Ironwood. She offers to incarcerate Marrow for treason, and Ironwood nods, granting her permission.

In the elevator, Winter realizes Ironwood needs to be stopped, and goes to contact her sister for her assistance. Once the elevator opens, she sees two more potential candidates for her upcoming coup: Qrow and Robyn.

Winter is next seen joining Ironwood outside the academy entrance, telling the Ace-Ops to deal with the intruders in the hangar while she assists her general, neither of them knowing of the coup she has planned. A few moments later, "Penny" arrives, and Winter immediately binds with wrists, brandishing her sword. She watches as Ironwood praises the girl for "doing the right thing," only for said girl to change into someone else, with Jaune, Ren, Nora, and Oscar behind her along with an Atlesian ship. Ironwood is taken off guard and disarmed, and Winter joins the heroes in battling her superior, with Winter herself delivering the final blow that takes Ironwood down in defeat. With the coup a success, she releases Emerald from her bonds, takes Ironwood's guns from her, and tells her and Team JNR to move to "phase two."

Winter is in the process of incarcerating Ironwood when Team RWBY uses the Relic of Creation to summon Ambrosius.

Later, when the citywide broadcast is cut off, Winter explains to Jacques that Atlas is indeed falling, but they're using the Staff to evacuate both Atlas and Mantle. When asked if he was going to be left behind, Winter denied it, saying he and Ironwood would be moved once the evacuation was complete, on Weiss' recommendation.

One last battle for the fate of Atlas and Mantle

Winter is next seen in the Vault, trying to regain contact with anyone in the city. Suddenly, she sees a laser pointer on the ground nearby. She turns around, and quickly erects a Glyph to shield herself, but is blown back by a powerful blast. She looks up from her vantage point, and sees Ironwood descending on the lift, his combined weapon in hand. Her disgraced superior orders Winter to step aside, but Winter refuses, calling him an enemy of Atlas. She then races towards Ironwood to engage him once more.

As the battle rages, Winter continues to denounce Ironwood for what he did to Atlas and Mantle. And though she fights valiant, Ironwood eventually overpowers her, breaking her Aura as a result. She lapses into unconsciousness, and is greeted by Penny, who said she'd thought of her which allowed them to meet. Realizing that Penny was dead and choosing her as her successor, Winter initially tried refusing, citing she was more a machine than Penny. But the former Maiden disagreed, saying Winter was her friend. Winter then accepts Penny's gift, and the former Maiden concluded by saying she would always be part of her, before fading from existence. Conscious once more, Winter manifests her new powers, which she uses to reflect Ironwood's cannon shot back at him, then flies into the portal.

Winter becomes the next Winter Maiden

Within the Evacuation Central Location, Winter finds Cinder and immediately engages her to stop her from killing Jaune and Weiss. She fights more evenly against the mad Maiden, and actually knocks the Staff from her possession. But before she can claim it, she sees Cinder targeting Jaune and Weiss again, and before she can reach them, a fiery explosion erupts under them, knocking Weiss off the path. Winter desperately tries to save her sister, but is not in time and watches as Weiss fades from sight. Winter flies back up to the path and collapsed, crying over Weiss' presumed death. But before she can engage Cinder again, an inhuman scream echoed throughout the dimension, and Jaune told her they had to flee. Winter vows to make Cinder pay for her crimes, and then turns to the portal to Vacuo. But then the pathway starts collapsing, and by the time Winter realizes it, she cannot stop her momentum and passes through the portal.

In Vacuo, Winter clears out a horde of Grimm threatening the people of Atlas and Mantle who'd escaped. She then looks sadly to Willow, Whitley, and Klein, unable to say what just happened to Weiss. At that moment, another horde of Grimm appears, and Winter moves in to engage them.

Episodes Covering These Events

References

  1. Roy Stallion card bio
Characters
RWBY/Justice League
Minor Characters