|“||I swore on my son's grave that I would kill the man who murdered him. I'm gonna keep my word.||”|
Lauren Winter is the mother of Johnny Winter, one of the victims of the Origami Killer. She works as a prostitute from her apartment. Further into the plot, she becomes a more major character, and once the game is complete she is interpretable as being its quaternary protagonist.
Lauren Winter is voiced by and modeled after Aurélie Bancilhon.
The majority of Lauren's past can be drawn from her confiding in Scott Shelby, when he informs her he's working with other families of the Origami Killer's victims. She confides that Johnny's father, Allan Winter, was a deadbeat who left the day that her son went missing, and that he used to abuse her. She also notes that she became a prostitute in order to save money, and that she intended to move away and have a better life with her son.
Meeting and Partnering with Scott Shelby
Lauren, as with Scott Shelby, first appears in "Sleazy Place." Scott is a P.I. investigating the case. Here, whether or not Scott gets Lauren to talk depends on his decisions in regards to talking to her. After Scott leaves, Troy, a former client of Lauren's, barges into her house and is about to abuse her. Scott can walk out of the building or can re-enter the apartment; in the latter case, Scott will fight Troy. (It is irrelevant to the story who wins this fight; the fight is more of a tutorial to the player on QTEs.)
She doesn't appear until a bit later in "A Visitor," where she offers Scott a letter that was addressed to Allan the morning Johnny disappeared. She insists on joining Scott to form a partnership, but only once Lauren threatens to withhold the letter from him does the reluctant Scott accept her. She also appears in "Kramer's Party" (in which they investigate Gordi Kramer, who was arrested but released due to his father's influence) and "Manfred" (in which Manfred, the owner of an antique shop, is murdered during their visit).
In "Eureka," Lauren reveals she found a notebook containing the clientele who attempted to buy/repair the Royal 5 typewriter used to type the letter she gave Scott. The only person whose name is on that list and a 500-person list of subscribers to an origami magazine is "John Sheppard." They visit the cemetery in which he is buried in "The Cemetery," where the gravedigger recounts the sad tale of how John died in water whilst holding his brother's hand. They then notice Charles Kramer, Gordi Kramer's father, placing flowers on his grave.
Possible Death and Endings
When Scott walks into his apparently unlocked apartment in "Trapped," he finds Lauren being held up at gunpoint by Charles and his agents. They trap Scott and Lauren in a car which is forced underwater. Scott cannot die here, but Lauren can if the player fails to free her. Regardless of whether or not Lauren was saved, Scott will then confront Kramer in "Face to Face." (Lauren doesn't appear in this chapter, but Scott's dialogue is notably more emotional if she died.)
Whether or not she survives in "Trapped" has an impact on Scott's endings.
Unpunished - If Scott survived in "The Old Warehouse" and Lauren Winter died in "Trapped," Scott will walk down a street having gotten away with all his crimes, including the one against Lauren's son.
Origami's Grave (with Lauren dead) - If Scott and Lauren are dead, the camera will pan around the graves of Scott Shelby and his brother John. No on-screen characters or voices are seen are heard.
Origami's Grave (with Lauren alive) - If Scott died and Lauren survived, Lauren will stand over Scott's grave. She will remark that she feels nothing but contempt for Scott, and spits on his grave as she coldly walks away.
A Mother's Revenge - If both Scott and Lauren survived in "The Old Warehouse" and "Trapped" respectively, then Scott will walk down the same street seen in "Unpunished" - however, he runs into Lauren. She states that she called all of the families whose sons died, and that none of them ever hired Scott, and Scott is the killer. After reminding Scott that she made a promise to kill the man who killed her son, Lauren pulls out a gun and executes him.
- Sleazy Place
- A Visitor
- Kramer's Party
- The Cemetery
- Flowers on the Grave
- Trapped (can be killed by Charles Kramer's elaborate drowning attempt)
- Goodbye Lauren (only if saved in "Trapped")
- Origami Killer (flashback)
- Epilogue - A Mother's Revenge
- Epilogue - Origami's Grave (only if saved in "Trapped")
- Lauren Winter is similar in appearance to Mary Smith from Heavy Rain: The Casting, a 2006 tech demo for Heavy Rain.
- Both Lauren and Mary were portrayed by Aurélie Bancilhon, leading some players to think they're the same person. Mary, however, states that she's 24 years old in The Casting, which would make her no older than 30 in October 2011.
- In "A Visitor," Lauren's voice actress's picture can be seen in Scott's files.
- Lauren has the second greatest number of appearances for a non-playable character, with 9 chapters; Blake appears in 12 chapters.
- Lauren is 5' 5" (1.65 m) tall.
- Lauren is the only partner of a playable character who ends up directly killing them in the end, if they both survive.
- Lauren is the only major character whom the player cannot play as at any point in the game, as well as the only NPC who has her own main theme.
- Lauren owns a Volvo 855. She is never seen driving it, but Scott borrows it in "Face to Face."
- Lauren is the only major non-playable character not to interact or cross paths with the other main protagonists.
- It is impossible for Lauren not to learn the Origami Killer's true identity if she is kept alive.