Affiliation

Schnee Dust Company

The Schnee Dust Company is owned by Winter's family. Winter herself does not work for the company, though she visits the SDC World Headquarters on the day Weiss calls for information in "A Minor Hiccup".

It is confirmed in "Punished" that Winter's title as heiress to her father's company was revoked upon her decision to join the military.

Atlesian Military

Winter is a member of the Atlesian Military. She is a member of the military's Special Operatives unit, and Qrow accordingly refers to her as a Specialist. She is also a subordinate of James Ironwood, whom she addresses as "sir".

Ironwood's Group

Winter was previously a member of Ironwood's group, whose initial goal was planning to restore global communications by replacing the CCTS by using Amity Colosseum as a satellite and tell the world about Salem.

Ace Operatives

Winter was a close co-worker with the Ace-Ops and worked with them in Ironwood's plans after he filled them in on Salem and the Relics. The Ace-Ops themselves showed to respect her as a peer and fellow Special Operative.

Later after Clover's death, Winter was assigned as their new leader by Ironwood. However, after she allows Yang's Group to go rescue Oscar instead of turning them in to Ironwood, most of them have developed a strained relationship with her, with Harriet later informing Ironwood of her decision. After Ironwood makes his ultimatum and Marrow tries to defect, Winter betrays the Ace-Ops under the guise of imprisoning Marrow for treason and later helps Qrow, Robyn, and Marrow subdue them before reaching the bomb.

Family

Weiss Schnee

A caring elder sister

Winter trained Weiss at least once prior to Weiss' fight against the Arma Gigas. She told her sister that she had to become stronger if she wanted to leave.

Although initially cold to Weiss, Winter has genuine concern for her sister's well-being, inquiring about her social life and eating habits, rather than just her studies and class rank. However, her methods of demonstrating this affection are rather unusual, rebuking her sister for misinterpreting her previously-mentioned inquiries and proceeding to slap her on the head for it.

She also knows of her sister neglecting their father, and can sympathize with the situation. She tells Weiss that if she wants to explore Remnant and learn about herself then she cannot answer to their father. She gives Weiss one last hug before departing.

After she and Weiss reunited in Atlas, she expressed relief to see Weiss again. As she continued to criticize Weiss for her actions and methods of re-entering Atlas, Weiss embraced her in a heartwarming hug before Winter hugs her back.

In "Sparks", she entrusts Weiss to keep her secret about her becoming the next host for the Winter Maiden powers after Fria passes away.

In "With Friends Like These" and "The Enemy of Trust", after Winter along with Penny heard Ruby's warning about Ironwood's plan to abandon Mantle, their relationship becomes strained, with Winter being both horrified and disappointed upon learning her sister was declared a wanted criminal. Although focusing on her mission to obtain the Winter Maiden powers, she is shown worryingly wondering what Weiss did to anger the General to the point of making her a wanted criminal.

When Weiss comes to help Winter fight Cinder, the first thing she does is angrily asking her sister what she did, showing both her frustration and worry of Weiss over her actions. After Penny obtains the power of the Winter Maiden, Winter suggests Weiss and her friends to surrender and turn themselves in and comply with General Ironwood's orders. When Weiss refuses to go along with his plans, Winter tells them that they should run.

Weiss, seeing how badly Winter is injured, refuses to leave her sister behind and tries to argue for her to stay with her and run away with them and later states her refusal to leave her like that. Winter in turn emotionally replies that Weiss wasn't leaving her, rather she was giving her a head start before proceeding to call for Atlas medical assistance and back up to help capture Team RWBY. Showing although Winter loves and cares for Weiss deeply, her loyalty to Ironwood would always come first for her and she would even comply with his orders to capture Weiss when the order is given, but due to her love for her sister, Winter can not go through with it without at least giving her a chance.

Weiss, seeing the resolve in her sister's eyes, calmly wished Winter luck in her chosen path and choice, before leaving to pursue her own.

Later in "Witch", when Marrow asks her if she would really detonate the bomb in Monstra even if Weiss' friends were in there and if she would do the same thing if Weiss herself was there, she is visibly saddened but states that she will do whatever it takes as a soldier.

In "Creation", Winter finally comes to her senses after Ironwood's ruthless threat to bomb Mantle and contacts Weiss, expressing regret that she didn't do it sooner. Weiss at the same time was happy to hear she had finally betrayed Ironwood.

Winter, devastated after she witnessed Weiss fall into the void

In "The Final Word", Winter saves Weiss from Cinder with the power of the Winter Maiden, with both of them visibly relieved to see one another safe. Winter is devastated when Weiss falls to the void to where she was left on her knees until Jaune gets through her and after arriving on Vacuo, she sheds a single tear and screams in clear grief and sorrow as she leads the Atlas and Mantle refugees against the Grimm in Vacuo, showing how much she loved her younger sister and how emotionally torn she was by the loss.

Jacques Schnee

Winter angrily telling her father to shut up.

Not much was known about Winter's relationship with her father, but it was implied that at some point it was a strained one, with the extent of this compared to her sister's being unknown. During her conversation with Weiss, she mentioned how she had been financially cut off from their father as well, then recalls her amusement towards their father's reaction the day Weiss left for Beacon. It is also hinted that their father was not pleased with Winter's decision to join the Atlesian Military when she graduated from Atlas.

When Weiss admitted that their father cut off her access to his credit card, Winter gave two options as advice. One was to call him, beg for his money back and try explaining once more why she chose to study at Beacon, but Winter's tone of voice hinted that the conversation would likely be heated and needless. The other option was for Weiss to continue as she has been, exploring Remnant and learning more about the world and herself. This option indicates that Winter is not opposed to Weiss being independent of their father.

Both Winter mentioning seeing their father's face the day Weiss left and her awareness of Weiss' repeated attempts to explain why she wanted to go to Beacon indicate that Winter is still in communication with him. It was unclear how frequently they communicated or how well they get along at the time.

In "Pomp and Circumstance", she intentionally arrived late to avoid seeing her father after Weiss confronted him with her team.

In "Sparks", she was shocked to see her father temporarily shut down all nonessential SDC operations in Mantle until he was elected for the council and comments that their father had found a spark to set the Kingdom on fire.

In "Cordially Invited", Winter's negative relationship with her father was fully shown in her outburst toward him, after becoming increasingly annoyed and angry while he manipulated and controlled the Council's meeting with Ironwood. She shouted at her father that he could not simply buy trust like he bought everything else. Jacques then twisted her words for his own argument, leaving Winter upset and flustered. She attempted to defend herself, but Ironwood stopped her, and she felt the need to exit the room and calm down.

In "As Above, So Below", when Jacques' actions in illegally winning the council elections was revealed, Winter had aimed a clear hostile look of disappointment at her father for the depths he would go to to win. She later expressed contempt for him due to his ignorance for inadvertently giving Arthur Watts his high level clearance into the Atlas systems.

In "Creation", when Winter places Ironwood in the same cells as Jacques, he questioned whether she would leave him to die as Atlas was about to fall. Winter coldly stated that he would also be evacuated only because Weiss wanted it, implying that Winter herself had no qualms leaving him to die and actually seemed to regret that he would also be rescued.

Whitley Schnee

Weiss has stated that Whitley dislikes Winter; however, Whitley claims to have a strong sense of respect for her. Winter herself seems to avoid interacting with her younger brother when she came to the Schnee Manor, suggesting she herself also dislikes his personality. However, when the newly improved Whitley approaches her along with Willow in clear concern that Weiss isn't with her, she just gives him a sad and solemn look, suggesting it may be possible for them to develop a better relationship.

Willow Schnee

Winter's exact relationship with her mother is unknown, as she has largely separated herself from her parents. She is likely aware of her mother's alcoholism and depression, having taken on a somewhat maternal role for her sister Weiss in their mother's place. As she avoids interacting with her and doesn't bother to ask about her condition, it suggests Winter herself dislikes her mother's alcoholism and her neglect of her children.

In "The Final Word", when Winter sees Willow and Whitley approaching, clearly concerned that Weiss isn't with her, she just gives her a sad look of sympathy, showing she acknowledges at least that her mother did care for her children deeply despite her depression and feels sad over her failure to save her sister.

Ironwood's Group

James Ironwood

Reporting for duty

Originally, Ironwood was Winter's superior in the Atlesian Military. As such, she held great respect for Ironwood and followed his every order almost without question. Ironwood appeared to reciprocate this respect, as he considered Winter one of his best when arguing with her father.

The full extent of his trust towards in Winter was shown in "Sparks" where it was revealed that Ironwood had long since selected Winter to be the inheritor and successor to the powers of the Winter Maiden and informed her the truth regarding Salem and the Relics.

In "With Friends Like These", after Ruby's warning about Ironwood's plan, she seemed shocked and disturbed about this, but she was willing to follow his plans to kill Fria and take the Winter Maiden powers, defending his actions as making the hard choices for the rest of the world.

In "The Enemy of Trust", after Penny obtained the Winter Maiden powers, she still refused to betray Ironwood because she would rather stay loyal to him than abandon him and help her sister.

Later in "Divide", Ironwood was glad that Winter was alright after her fight with Cinder Fall, telling her that he wouldn't know what do to without her support. Winter was shocked however when he killed Councilman Sleet who demanded to know what Ironwood was doing.

In "Ultimatum", her relationship with Ironwood became strained when Harriet informed him that Winter let Yang's Group go to rescue Oscar instead of keeping them arrested like he told her to do. She was also visibly disturbed when he smashed his table out of rage and at his plan to hold Mantle hostage in order to get Penny back.

In "Risk", after seeing Ironwood was serious about his threat against Mantle and almost killing Marrow for calling out his extreme orders, Winter decided to turn against him by first saving Marrow, then collaborating with Ruby's Group to have him stopped.

In "Creation", she defeated him alongside Oscar and Team JNPR and imprisoned him next to her father. She did take a time to give a somber look at her former general, suggesting a part of her felt bad and saddened over having to fight him. She also seemed approving of Ironwood being evacuated in stark contrast of her clear disapproval and lack of concern for Jacques.

Facing off against her former commanding officer

In "Worthy", Winter was confronted by Ironwood at the Vault where he demanded she stepped aside. Winter refused and drew her swords against him, calling him an enemy of Atlas. After hearing this, Ironwood shed a tear and prepared to fight against her.

In "The Final Word", Winter fully showcased her anger and discomfort with Ironwood's actions and dismissed his attempts to resolve the matter peacefully. Although she was overwhelmed at first, once she acquired the power of the Winter Maiden, she easily defeated Ironwood and left him behind.

Penny Polendina

Winter comforting Penny about Ironwood abandoning Mantle.

Winter and Penny share a professional yet good relationship with each other along with both of them are some of the people Ironwood told the secrets of the Maiden powers, the Relics and Salem.

In "Cordially Invited", Winter and Penny have a heart to heart on the topic of emotions, and whether to hide them. Penny is unable to recognize why the Schnee Manor causes Winter to feel intense anger, nor why she chooses to hide her emotions away.

In "With Friends Like These", Winter and Penny talk about Ironwood declaring martial law, and his decision to sacrifice Mantle to Salem, with Winter defending the general's actions over making the hard choices for others.

In "The Enemy of Trust", Penny saves a falling Winter who got hit by Cinder's attack who then explains that saving her was unnecessary since "her life did not matter", to which Penny respectfully disagrees to. After the battle, their relationship turns sour once Penny takes the Maiden's powers, effectively robbing Winter of what she saw as her destiny, and betraying Ironwood to Ruby's Group. Winter reports the Maiden powers are gone to Ironwood.

In "Midnight", as she and the Ace-Ops are on their way to retrieve Penny, she tells them to quiet down when Elm Ederne refers to Penny as a "broken piece of junk", showing that she still hold a strong sense of attachment for Penny.

Penny tells Winter that she will be a part of her instead of being gone.

Later in "The Final Word", Winter is saddened when she realizes that Penny sacrificed her life in order to give her the Maiden powers instead of Cinder, stating that she was the real Maiden all along. However, Penny confronts Winter by telling her that she won't be completely gone, but a part of her instead, a direct reference to what Winter told Penny before. Afterwards, Winter tearfully thanks her for trusting her.

Harriet Bree

Harriet rats Winter out to Ironwood.

Winter and Harriet were co-workers due to both being part of the Ace-Ops. However, their relationship is strained in War when Winter let's Yang's Group try to rescue Oscar. Harriet objects to this, only for Winter to inform her that she outranks her. Later in "Ultimatum", Harriet rats Winter out to Ironwood about her actions and tells him she went against his orders.

Marrow Amin

Winter and Marrow seem to share the same vision and thoughts of Ironwood. When Marrow finally couldn't take Ironwood's orders anymore, Winter quickly realized Ironwood would have killed Marrow on the spot and intervened, making a show of arresting Marrow as a traitor and claiming she would put him in lock-up. When they were alone in an elevator, she undid his restraints and confirmed their mutual thoughts that Ironwood had to be stopped although they briefly bickered as Marrow complained about Winter hitting him, which she explained was to fool Ironwood and to save his life. They met up with Qrow and Robyn and contacted Weiss in order to plan out a means to save everyone and stop Ironwood.

Others

Qrow Branwen

A clash between two rivals.

In "New Challengers...", Qrow eagerly waits for her arrival at the local bar, explaining to the bartender that the fight he was there for has finally arrived. This prompts him to head over to Beacon Academy, in an attempt to catch up with her. It is revealed that Winter appear to be previously acquainted with Qrow, as she is on first name basis with him, with the latter often amusing himself at the former's expense. During their meet up in "It's Brawl in the Family", Qrow decapitates the AK-200s that accompanied Winter to Beacon. This culminates a battle in the middle of Beacon Academy's courtyard. Although it is shown during their battle that they have no malicious intent towards each other and that this is simply their way of teasing one another. Upon close inspection, the two are seen to be smirking at each other throughout the altercation.

After they reunited in Atlas, Winter questions Qrow's chaperoning methods as to which he replies that "it's hard to change the mind of the kids when they have their minds set on something."

In "Creation", she and Marrow team up with Qrow and Robyn to stop Ironwood's bomb from being deployed.

During the February 2019 Update of the mobile game RWBY: Amity Arena, Qrow was given a Valentine's Outfit named "Dandy Qrow". A year later, during the February 2020 Update, Winter was given a matching Valentine's Outfit named "Queen Winter" with the following caption: "Now Winter can fight with Qrow all day as mortal frenemies!". Additionally, the player title "Mortal Frenemies" is distributed to the players who logged in during that year's Valentine's Day.

Ruby Rose

Winter appears to think little of Ruby upon initially meeting her, stating that she is "appropriately underwhelming". She is, however, thankful to Ruby for "taking an interest" in Weiss. In the conflict between Winter and Qrow, Ruby sides with her uncle.

After Ironwood declared martial law and listed Ruby and her friends as fugitives, they became enemies up until "Creation", when she turns on him and aligns herself with her and her team to stop him.

Fria

Winter having tea with Fria.

Fria was the previous Winter Maiden. After the Fall of Beacon, Ironwood gave Winter a secret assignment: to be Fria's only caretaker until her passing. In "Sparks", Winter showed a good relationship with Fria, as they were seen having a nice cup of tea. As such, Winter was the only person Fria could see, meaning that Winter would become her successor once Fria passed away. However in "The Enemy of Trust", the powers pass on to Penny instead. Winter is slightly upset, but instead decides to give it all up in a split second.[1]

Cinder Fall

"You Atlas elites are all the SAME!"

Winter is shown to have a disdain towards Cinder, whereas Cinder sees Winter in low regard, accusing her of being a puppet to Ironwood. In their fight, Cinder begins to rant at Winter, fully showing her contempt for the Atlas specialist and deeming her to be no better than the other Atlas elite who believe that as long as they have all the power they could keep it forever, venting her frustration and refusal to "starve".

During their fight and Cinder's subsequent attempt to obtain the power of the Winter Maiden from the dying Fria, Winter manages to slash off Cinder's Shadow Hand right before she could reach the elderly Maiden, causing Cinder intense pain and sending her into a violent rage after regrowing her limb. Which caused the angered Maiden to begun violently attacking and slowly maiming the Huntress before finally injuring her to the point of rendering her incapable of defending herself as Cinder prepares to stab her to death. However before Cinder could finish her off, she was stopped by the recently ascended Penny and later forced to retreat by Ruby's arrival.

In "The Final Word", Winter and Cinder fight with Winter now as the Winter Maiden and more than able to fight her on equal grounds even after having previously fought Ironwood and apparently not fully recovering from Cinder's initial beatdown of her, even seemingly taking the initiative and forcing her to drop the Staff, to where Cinder was only able to retrieve it due to knocking Weiss and Blake down. This made Winter furious to where she vowed to get revenge on her later.

References

  1. RWBY Volume 7 Crew Commentary - Chapter 13
Characters
Minor Characters
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