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"We may be animals, but we will never again live in your cage."
Winter, Chapter 43

Winter Hayle is a Lunar ambassador, formerly known as the princess of Luna, and was the stepdaughter of Queen Levana.


Early life

Winter was born on January 3, 109 T.E. to Evret Hayle and to Solstice Hayle. Solstice died shorty after her birth. Her father was forced to marry Princess Levana when Winter was only a few months old. Therefore, Winter became the stepdaughter of Levana and thus a princess of Luna. Her father was murdered by Head Thaumaturge Joshua Haddon, under Levana's orders. She told Scarlet that she had no friends (besides animals) except for Jacin Clay, a Lunar guard, her friend since childhood, and Cinder, whom she knew as Princess Selene, who she presumed dead. She refuses to use her Lunar gift because she used her gift to stop a servant attempting suicide. Later, after the servant succeed, Winter learned that Thaumaturge Aimery Park had been torturing her, and that by trying to help, Winter had only made it worse. After that, Winter swore to never use her gift again.[citation needed]

Recent events


When visiting Scarlet in her cage in the end of Cress, Winter tells her that "I know [that Winter is crazy]. Do you know how I know? ...the palace walls have been bleeding for years... but if the blood was real, the servants would clean it up. Don't you think?" Winter also told her that one of her only human friends "turned into a pile of ashes" Cinder and that the other disappeared Jacin. She pretends to play pretend with Scarlet, for the benefit of anyone watching, to provide cover so that she can give Scarlet some sour apple petites laced with painkillers.


In Winter, she escapes from the palace by pretending to be even more insane than she already is, sending her guards on a wild goose chase. After escaping, she goes to see Jacin, who has been tied up and lashed due to his betrayal (which he managed to avoid the death penalty for due to him bending the truth - a lot). Jacin tells Winter that Princess Selene is alive, and that she is Cinder. Winter doesn't believe him at first, but gradually realizes that it is true. Jacin tells her more about the device that prevents a Lunar from using(or going insane from not using) their Lunar gift. Their conversation ends when Winters's guard finds her and escorts her back to Artemisia Palace.

A few days later, Jacin is assigned to be Winter's new guard. Winter is excited and tries to show him her new solar system that she painted herself. Jacin is in guard mode for Winter's safety, so Winter takes it out into the hall and paints at his feet.

Some days later, Winter visits at a flower shop on the way to give the milliner's assistant's baby an embroidered baby blanket, and some kids give her a flower crown that they made from scraps. Jacin scares the kids off, rips the crown off of Winter's head, and destroys it, fearing that Levana may be watching.

Aimery asks Winter to marry him, but she refuses, greatly angering him and the queen. Later that day, Winter spots Cress while Levana is questioning a technician, and Winter empties a box of paper so that Cress can hide in it.

Later, Winter goes back down to check on her, but Cress is no longer in the box. Winter describes Cress to Jacin, who remembered Cress and her antics. He finds her curled up in a ball. They smuggle Cress into the guard quarters, where she hides in Jacin's room.

Some time later, Jacin is summoned by the queen and commanded to kill Winter. Jacin fakes her death, killing Ryu, freeing Scarlet, and commanding Scarlet to get Winter to safety.

Winter and Scarlet eventually reach Cinder and her friends, but have to hide when Aimery and several guards arrive in RM-9. The princess fights with Iko against the guard captain, Jerrico, but is knocked out in the process. In her unconscious state, she dreams about Levana, and promises her that she will "never again live in your [Levana's] cage".

Winter travels with Scarlet to the location of eleven of Levana's mutant wolf soldiers, in an attempt to convince them to join Selene in her revolution. They initially refuse, but then Winter goes nuts, saying things like, "I have an idea! ...This one can be our pet." She tries to pet a mutant wolf soldier on the nose, but the wolf soldiers jerks his nose away. "No? Would you rather play fetch?" She giggles and howls and thinks that Scarlet looks like a wolf. The soldiers realize that it is Lunar sickness. Thaumaturges appear to kill Winter and Scarlet, but the wolf soldiers turn against them and kill them all. They join Winter and Scarlet and head towards LW-12.

Levana finds Winter in LW-12 and tricks her into eating a sour apple petite that she claims is from Jacin, but actually has letumosis pathogens inside. Levana leaves as Winter becomes ill and passes out before she cam warn anyone, infecting Scarlet and many of the people in the sector. She is put in a suspended animation tank to slow the disease down. Eventually, Cinder and Jacin show up with the antidote, and distribute it to everyone. Unfortunately, seven people had already died.

When the battle finally happens, Winter and Jacin are attacked by Aimery. He uses his gift to make Winter strangle Jacin, but before it happens, Wolf and Scarlet sneak up. Aimery laughs, and goes to claim Scarlet's bioelectricity, but it is already claimed by Winter. Winter uses Scarlet to stab Aimery nine times. Aimery dies, and Winter collapses.

When Winter is unconscious, Jacin frets and finally kisses her. When he pulls away and opens his eyes, he finds that Winter is staring at him. Winter does not seem to remember anything.

Later, Winter is trying to play with ghost Ryu in the menagerie when Jacin walks up. Jacin tells her that Cinder thinks that she would be a good ambassador. She accepts, as long as Jacin is with her. Winter tells Jacin that she is volunteering for the prototype of Lihn Garan's "Lunar lock". Jacin tries to convince her otherwise, but she refuses to be swayed. Winter asks, "You think I'm perfect?" Jacin stares at her, "like she'd asked him if Luna orbited the Earth." He kisses her forehead, and replies, "Just sort of. You know. On a good day."



"She might be broken. She might be crazy. But she would not be defeated."
―About Winter

Winter is gentle, graceful, intelligent, and playful. Because she refused to use her glamour gift since the age of thirteen, Winter has become slightly insane. She has a whimsical voice and uses flighty gestures. She almost skips when she walks, and has a tendency to wander off. She is comfortable around people, with the exception for Lunar aristocracy, but has a habit of getting into their personal space and making them uncomfortable.[1] In fact, Winter acts especially alert around them, sometimes even coldly so.

Although her whimsical nature and hallucinations often cause others to overlook her, Winter is intelligent and thinks up unique solutions. She is very kind, forgiving, and sympathetic. She treats everyone with kindness and respect. Winter is known to make the best out of any situation - this attribute was shown when she was manipulated to cut her own face, but still did not let anyone's opinions on her new appearance faze her. Instead, Winter kept a positive outlook on life and did not shed any tears which made her a very approachable person, unlike her stepmother.

However, after the Lunar sickness healing device has worked on her, two years later she attends Scarlet's wedding with a different aura. Rather than any form of hallucination taking its toll on Winter, she is more grounded yet still retains her innocent, fun personality.

Physical attributes

Coloring book character profile Winter.png

Winter is 5’9” tall and slender, but with enviable curves, extremely graceful limbs and a long neck. She has warm, dark brown skin with three long scars on her right cheek, high cheekbones, and full ruby-red lips. Her hair is in thick, black, tight corkscrew curls that fall to just below her shoulders. Her eyes are bright caramel-colored, with hints of slate-gray around the pupils and emerald flecks. Marissa Meyer also describes her to have "ridiculously long eyelashes".

Because of her beauty, Levana forced Winter to mutilate her own face at the sweet age of thirteen. As a result of this, she has three scars that cut down from the corner of her eye down to her jaw, in the form of perpetual tears on her right cheek. Somehow, these scars did not reduce her beauty, but increased it. 

She dresses sophisticatedly and conservatively, wearing both flowy skirts and pants but always stays true to a feminine style. She likes to wear pastels and light colors, silvers, gauzy fabrics, etc.[1]


Winter had enormous skill and potential with her Lunar gift. When she was thirteen, a servant committed suicide. It was the same servant that Winter had saved from a suicide attempt years before. Winter learned that Thaumaturge Aimery Park was torturing the poor servant, and Winter realized that by trying to help, she had only made it worse, so she stopped using her gift completely. This caused her to develop Lunar sickness, giving her hallucinations and making her go insane. Fortunately, Lihn Garan's "Lunar lock" works, and she recovers from Lunar sickness, while still being her happy and charming self.

As a Lunar, Winter has the ability to bioelectrically manipulate people. However, when she was thirteen, she stopped using her glamour. Due to this, she suffers from Lunar sickness. Winter had great potential, and could have become a thaumaturge if she had continued to use her gift.

In Winter, when she is confronted by head thaumaturge Aimery, Winter uses her gift one last time, manipulating Scarlet, who successfully subdues him. However, this results in grave repercussions, being hospitalized after suffering from memory loss.


Jacin Clay

Since young, Jacin and Winter had a strong relationship, as the two often were seen playing house or collaborative games together as children. It was until at the age of thirteen when Winter realized her feelings for Jacin. However, she did not let her feelings for him get in the way of their relationship, as Jacin appeared to reciprocate a sense of protection for her nonetheless. Years later, when Winter is classed with Lunar sickness, Jacin still shows unwavering loyalty towards her and stays by her side no matter what. It appears that Jacin's feelings for Winter grew over the years, as in Cress, he betrays Cinder and the group to return to Winter. In Winter, as part of the royal guard, Jacin occasionally lets his professionalism slip when conversing only with Winter, demonstrating an exceptional bond between the two. When Jacin is plagued with the task of killing Winter or letting Levana kill his family in consequence, he decides to kill Ryu instead to fake her death. Before Winter escapes, they share a kiss. Jacin is soon enough reunited with Winter, who comes down with letumosis. He luckily finds a cure for her and vows to never leave her again. Once confronted with head thaumaturge Aimery, Winter decides to finally use her Lunar gift once more. She ends up killing him but suffers from damage mentally, causing her to have memory loss. Jacin stays by her side until she wakes up from her mental trauma, and she regains her memories. As soon as she is awoken, Winter is the first to try out the Lunar sickness healing device and expresses remorse for being "broken", but Jacin still believes that Winter is flawless.

Levana Blackburn

Given that Winter was born under another mother that Levana was jealous of, Levana has been spiteful about Winter's existence from the beginning. Due to this, Levana had always treated her stepdaughter rudely, not caring about Winter's true feelings. Levana had never shown affection to Winter, merely keeping Winter around to ensure that the Lunar royal bloodline would continue. Levana was blatantly jealous of Winter's natural beauty, kindness, and adoration from the citizens. Winter, who assumed the good in everyone including Levana, did not suspect this until she was told such by Jacin. Levana's disregardful acts towards Winter miraculously did not influence Winter to be as cold or vain as her stepmother, which did nothing but irk Levana further.

Scarlet Benoit

Besides Jacin, Winter is closest with Scarlet. Their relationship depicts a sisterly love, with Scarlet being an older sister to Winter; Scarlet looks out for Winter and cares a lot for her safety, and they share a deep, mutual bond. Scarlet initially found Winter's behavior to be odd but quickly got used to it, after discovering that Winter was truly a kind person. After the Lunar monarchy was dissolved and the battle is won by Cinder and the group, Winter makes a trip to Earth to commemorate Scarlet's wedding.

Evret Hayle

Out of all Winter's family, Evret was easily the one that she trusted the most as her father. She had never stopped assuming good faith in her father and knew that he was a wise person. Likewise, Evret loved his daughter very much, and believed that she would grow up to become a kindhearted queen. When her father died, Winter was incredibly devastated.

Linh Cinder (Selene Blackburn)

Winter explains that when she was young, her only other friend besides Jacin was Selene Blackburn. Winter was devastated by Selene's alleged death from an ambiguous fire, demonstrating her affection for her step-cousin. It becomes apparent to Winter that Selene does indeed survive the fire years later, and now is under the name of Linh Cinder. Their relationship is a friendly one at that, and they are always willing to help each other.

Aimery Park

Winter treated Avery with severe disdain for the right reasons. She noticed his attempts of courting her, and she disapproved of this immensely. However due to her step-mother's reign, Winter could not fully dismiss him - instead she tried to be as defiant as she could towards Avery and the most of the Lunar guards and aristocracy.

Family Tree

Marrok Blackburn
Jannali Blackburn
Unknown ♂
Channary Blackburn
Levana Blackburn
Evret Hayle
Solstice Hayle
Selene Blackburn
Winter Hayle


  • Winter's character is inspired by Snow White.
  • She was born in January 3, 109 T.E., which makes her a Capricorn.
  • Winter was named in honor of her mother who died at childbirth, Solstice Hayle. This is because she was born under the winter solstice.
  • Her full red lips and black hair are a reference to Snow White's appearance, while being darkskinned.
  • Scarlet and Winter seem to act like sisters on occasions, Scarlet as the older and more mature one and Winter as the younger and more playful one.
    • This could potentially be a nod to the lesser-known fairytale by the Brothers Grimm, Snow-White and Rose-Red. While it is unknown who the older sister is in said tale, Scarlet and Winter appear to share similar character traits to Snow-White and Rose-Red - Winter, as Snow-White, is "quiet and shy and prefers to spend her time indoors, doing housework and reading."[2]



See also: Images of Winter