- “I'm an excellent judge of character. I think you'll find my assessments to be right on the money.”
- —Miranda Lawson to John Shepard
Miranda Lawson (born c. 2150) was a high-ranking Cerberus operative and biotic who served as one of the Illusive Man's top agents and Commander John Shepard's second-in-command during the Collector crisis.
A very well informant with many contacts, Miranda's range of contacts extend from Citadel space and the Terminus Systems, to as far as the hostile Nemean Abyss. Her vast network may be explained by the fact Miranda is a known Cerberus operative, one who still has friends — or at least friends of friends — in the Alliance military.
From 2183 to 2185 CE, Miranda was assigned as head of the Lazarus Project, which brought Shepard back to life when he was killed by the Collectors one month after the Battle of the Citadel. When Shepard was sent by the Illusive Man to defeat the Collectors, Miranda joins as the new Normandy SR-2's executive officer, giving mission reports to the Illusive Man. Although initially skeptic and cold towards Shepard, she eventually warmed up to him and became one of his closest friends. During the Normandy's final maiden voyage beyond the Omega-4 Relay, Miranda proved her loyalty by severing all ties with Cerberus once the suicide mission proved to be a success.
Some time before the Reaper invasion, Miranda spent the next several months on the run while trying to determine the whereabouts of her sister Oriana. During the war's final stages, she rescued her sister and was part of the Citadel Allied Forces's strike teams to retake Earth from the Reapers.
Following the end of the war, the Systems Alliance officially granted Miranda amnesty for her contribution. Since then, she became a high-ranking member of Alliance Intelligence and eventually rose to become the agency's director.
Born in Brisbane, Australia sometime in 2150 CE, Miranda Lawson was artificially created by Henry Lawson, an extremely influential and very wealthy businessman who spent vast sums of money into making her as a perfect specimen of human perfection as biologically possible. Everything, from her intelligence, immune system, lifespan, biotic abilities, to her appearance were designed before birth to be excellent. According to Miranda, she never had a mother and her father was an arrogant and egomaniacal man who didn't want a daughter as much as a dynasty, which was why he used his own DNA and doubled his X chromosome as a genetic template to create her.
Despite her accomplishments, Henry never showed approval or pride towards Miranda and always expected more and better from her — forever chiding her to be greater than she already was. He also imposed a very strict lifestyle on Miranda, and forbade her from making friends and having a social life. Abused and feeling pressured constantly into meeting her father's expectations, Miranda was left with deep self-loathing and feelings of inadequacy.
Working with Cerberus
Eventually, a teenaged Miranda soon discovered her father's plans of creating another daughter, Oriana. Unhappy with his attempts to exert control over her life and refusing to allow him to torture her sister as he had with her, Miranda relinquished her privileged lifestyle and ran away from home with her infant genetic twin as a soon as she could — although some gunfire was involved. Her father used his extensive network of contacts to chase her across the galaxy, but she managed to elude him nonetheless.
At some point Miranda approached Cerberus and joined them in exchange for protection. Miranda knew of them since her father sympathized with their pro-human agenda and was a major backer. When she enlisted with Cerberus, he stopped pursuing her but severed his ties to the group. Despite their past dealings with her father, Miranda's ideology aligned with Cerberus' desire to help humanity and came to enjoy the opportunity to work with people as smart as she is and the amount of latitude their clandestine operations afford her; she is given an objective, all the resources she needs, and nothing more. Evidently, Miranda has advanced far enough to become one of the few in the organization, much less the galaxy, that meets and answers directly to the Illusive Man, who appreciates her abilities.
Foiling a terrorist attack
Miranda first makes contact with former Alliance marine Jacob Taylor after being referred to him as an informant through his former commanding officer, Derek Izunami. Izunami arranges for them to meet in a bar called the Fringe on Cartagena Station, a space station in the Nemean Abyss. Miranda greets Jacob after he takes out a group of pirates who had taken over the bar, quipping that she was expecting someone taller.
She then explains the supposed batarian plot to sabotage the peace talks at the Citadel by assassinating Ambassador Jath'Amon. Miranda gives Jacob three sources which may relate to the recent batarian attacks: a turian arms dealer named Illo Nazario on the planet Tortuga, who has worked with the batarians for years; the planet Bekke where a batarian army is reportedly gathering; and a rumor that the batarians have kidnapped several scientists and are holding them on the Ahn'Kedar Orbital Platform.
Miranda then assists Jacob from his ship during his investigations. On Tortuga, Jacob receives the codes for Nazario's compound from Miranda's salarian contact Ish. After Jacob fights his way through the compound, he and Miranda find that Nazario has been infected with a deadly bioweapon and agree to find a cure in exchange for his information on the batarians. On Ahn'Kedar, Jacob rescues the captive scientists and learns that they need a large quantity of element zero in order to complete a cure.
When they arrive on Bekke, Miranda reports strange readings from the planet surface as the ship comes under fire. She later picks up the massive eezo cache Jacob discovers in the facility. Miranda accompanies Jacob during his interrogation of Nazario, who informs them that Jath'Amon has no intention of a peace treaty, the peace talks being a cover to assassinate the Council with the bioweapon. She then accompanies him to the Citadel, where Jacob subdues Jath'Amon and saves the Council. Miranda later joins Jacob on his resumed vacation on the Arcturian Jade with a bottle of celebratory champagne.
Search for Shepard's body
Miranda locates Jacob at a bar in the Citadel nearly a month after the geth attack on the station with a job proposal for him. She patiently hears out his grievances against the Council and the Alliance and reminds him of their past collaboration together before stating her purpose, but Jacob's disinterested reaction afterward prompts her to leave. Miranda stokes his interest by claiming he could've made a difference, and reels him in further by painting Cerberus as an organization willing to take action. The Alliance man still has misgivings over Cerberus' terrorist reputation, so Miranda offers him the chance to see for himself how they operate. Specifically, the job is about finding the recently-fallen Commander John Shepard.
While en route to the Terminus Systems Miranda answers Jacob's queries about her organization. Many people on Earth support Cerberus' goal of human advancement, she claims, and ultimately Cerberus is accountable to humanity itself. Arriving at their destination, Miranda briefs Jacob about the intel she knows: the SSV Normandy SR-1 was destroyed and Shepard is missing. Miranda warns him not to display his Alliance clothes at the planet they're going, supplying him with combat armor and revealing the ship's armory of Cerberus weapons.
Miranda shows Jacob around the grim underbelly of a typical Terminus colony when she's harassed by a batarian with a scarred upper-right eye. She pulls out a M-4 Shuriken submachine gun, dumps the batarian's accomplice to the ground while keeping the gun at him, and orders a meeting with her contact. The contact, a ruddy batarian slaver, claims that Shepard's corpse isn't around anymore, and Miranda doesn't believe it. She counters by offering double of whatever he's receiving to keep the information secret - half up front, half upon item retrieval - and receives a location after further persuasion.
When Jacob asks about her methods on the way to the next location, she claims it's harder to turn down credits when you're holding them. Miranda wants to make certain of Shepard's fate regardless of circumstances, pointing out that the intel she knew mentioned a stasis pod holding the body. Her partner is beginning to see the pointlessness of the effort and questions why he's even around, so Miranda reassures him that Cerberus needs people of his character. To that end, she says, he needs to see the group's capabilities.
A flustered Miranda realizes they're lost in the streets. A street urchin begs her for credits but she curtly dismisses the kid. Jacob, on the other hand, successfully coaxes the girl for info on their next location, a slaver place. He's disquieted about the existence of human slaves and calls Cerberus out for ignoring the issue. Miranda takes the tack that Cerberus does help when it can but prioritizes missions of greater import for humanity. Before their debate goes further Miranda spots a gang of batarians converging on their location, readying her sidearm.
Miranda takes the lead in escaping from their attackers. She kicks one of the thugs in the face before Jacob spots another escape. They meet the street urchin again, who gives them colored fabrics to disguise their appearances. Miranda takes the green while Jacob wears the red, and both of them agree on the suspicion of being set up. She plans to revisit their batarian contact to demand answers, regrouping first at the ship for resupply and scheming. Miranda vows not to leave the planet until she got what she came for.
The duo find their ship being booby-trapped by the batarians they've been dealing with. Miranda sneaks behind the scarred batarian and points a gun at his head, demanding the explosives be taken off. Her hostage is unfazed by her actions and the ship explodes. Jacob recovers from the blast but Miranda is nowhere to be found; only her burning green garment.
Recruiting Jacob Taylor
An unconscious Miranda is hauled away from the explosion by the underlings of her treacherous contact and dumped into the presence of warlord Torthak. While Torthak ponders what to do with the captive, Miranda wakens and deigns to warn him to make up his mind fast. Miranda headbutts the batarian when he crouches to face her, but is easily subdued mere moments later. Both of them look up at the arrival of a man Torthak assigns to interrogate her.
Miranda gives her captors nothing despite being beaten, so Torthak orders his minions to dispose of her. Miranda calls him coward and ballsless for his seeming reluctance to kill her himself, but Torthak just claims he knows she's stalling. Torthak stuck a knife into Miranda's batarian contact earlier, leaving it and the corpse nearby, and her interrogator Taleed dares her to take the knife before he kills her. Miranda sees a flashbang grenade bounce off the corpse, shields her senses accordingly instead of rising up to Taleed's bait, and in comes Jacob with guns blazing for the rescue.
Jacob disables Taleed and offs the other batarians in the building, and Miranda pulls out the knife from the contact's corpse. She moves to stick it in Taleed but Jacob stops her long enough to learn the location of slaves held in the building. Miranda warily questions Jacob's actions, who simply replies he's fulfilling a promise, and follows him shortly when he beckons.
Miranda silently observes Jacob as he herds the slaves away from their captivity. On their way out they're stopped by the sight of Torthak holding a familiar street urchin hostage. Miranda taunts how he's stooped to killing kids now that even women seemed to be too difficult for him, and while Torthak's attention is on her Jacob takes the shot that puts a bullet through his chest. Miranda "thanks" the batarian for stalling for her, quipping he should've killed her when he had the chance.
The street urchin, Lakshmi, gives Miranda a yellow rose now that her family minus her uncle Taleed has been accounted for. She thanks the kid and watches her scamper away. Turning to Jacob, they discuss the aftermath of what just happened. Snarking at Jacob's knight in shining armor routine, Miranda deems his actions an unnecessary risk, claiming she was "gathering intel" at the time. Jacob tells her she's just going to accept how he rolls if they are to keep working together, bringing a hand to her face to wipe something off. Miranda makes no move to reject the gesture and thanks him.
Miranda brushes off Jacob's concerns for her well-being, claiming she's had worse, but appreciates his rescue nonetheless. She then asks if he's still glad he came, hearing that he is before he steers the conversation to their original mission. Miranda confirms that Shepard's body was indeed sold to another bidder, already long gone from the planet. She reiterates her vow to get the Commander back, and Jacob is taken aback by his inclusion.
Miranda still wants him to join Cerberus but wants nothing less than his certain commitment. If he's interested, she promises to arrange a meeting between him and the Illusive Man. As their transport is destroyed, Miranda gives Jacob until their extraction to decide whether he wants in. In the meantime, as they approach an establishment labeled "Oasis" in blue neon lights, Miranda prompts him to voice any further questions he has.
A few months after the destruction of the SSV Normandy, Miranda meets with Liara and Feron on Omega after their fight with Blue Suns mercenaries. Miranda tells Liara that they have the same goal and brings her to meet the Illusive Man. Miranda also says to Liara that the Blue Suns were the ones who attacked her and that the mercenary group has Commander Shepard's body and its still on Omega because Cerberus would have found out if someone had left with it. Then Miranda tells Liara that if she wants to find Shepard's body, she needs Feron's help.
Before Feron and Liara go through the Omega 2 Relay for the Shadow Broker's base, Miranda asks the Illusive Man to stop Tazzik, who is going to hit the Omega 2 Relay, but he tells her to wait. Then she sees Feron's ship and asks Illusive Man to follow it but once again he tells Miranda to wait.
After Liara acquires Shepard's body, Miranda meets Liara at Lazarus Research Station, where Shepard's body is transferred for recovery, and tells her that they may not be able to restore Shepard and that the body is in worse shape than expected. Liara tells Miranda to let the dead rest and that what Cerberus does is not what she brought Shepard back for. Miranda interrupts and tells her that maybe the Collectors would have done the same. She also explains that the Illusive Man is more hopeful about Shepard's prospects and they're going to spend everything they have but it will still take a very long time if it works at all. When Liara asks what will the boss do about Feron, Miranda answers that the drell knew the risks and if Liara wants to go after him, that's her business and suggests that she do what she wants.
Director of Project Lazarus
Upon acquiring Shepard's corpse, Miranda is placed in charge of the Lazarus Project and is tasked with bringing Shepard back to life. At the Minuteman Station, she receives agents Rasa and Kai Leng's shuttle, fresh out of their abortive mission to capture Subject Zero. On orders from the Illusive Man, Miranda appropriates Rasa's services and sends Kai Leng back to the shuttle for a meeting with the boss.
At the station's labs, Miranda outlines the Lazarus Project's purpose to Rasa, going so far as to show her Shepard's operated-on body as well as the Commander's backup clone. However, the Illusive Man isn't satisfied with a copy: he wants the real deal, and Miranda informs Rasa that her part in it is to steal Shepard's classified files.
Miranda takes Rasa to her office and explains the details of the op. Shepard's records are in the Spectre offices on the Citadel. She gives Rasa a disc containing highly-classified but outdated Cerberus secrets and instructs her to bring it to Tela Vasir. The Spectre can get Rasa inside their offices, and it will be up to her to find a way to get the files.
A few days later, Miranda manages to comm Rasa after an unexpected contact loss. Rasa reports she has acquired the data, but doing so was harder than she expected. Miranda starts praising her efforts though Rasa hastily severs contact, who unbeknownst to Miranda is being poisoned at the time. A few more days pass before Miranda gets hold of Rasa again back aboard the Minuteman Station, ordering medical help on the half-conscious agent. She gets the disc back from Rasa, who tries to warn her about its tainted contents. Miranda assures her she's got it covered, telling her to focus on getting well.
Another set of days pass, and on the Illusive Man's sanctum Miranda reports on the completeness of the intel Rasa has procured. She has managed to counteract Vasir's hidden virus and obtained additional funding for the Lazarus Project while she's at it. The Illusive Man is pleased: Miranda assumes the clone project is no longer a priority, and her boss allows her to continue using it for testing. Rasa's cover, however, is blown, and Miranda reckons she'll never work in the field again. The Illusive Man agrees, but tells her not to worry as he still has a use for her.
The assassin and doctor
Miranda visits Rasa on her sickbed two days before her scheduled return to duty, intending to have her compile a full report on Shepard's prospective recruits. She notices the bedridden agent's focus on her poisoner, and is regaled with the accusation that Thane Krios is the culprit. Miranda is unperturbed and flatly assures her of the futility of obsessing over it, pointing out the significant expense Cerberus spent in reviving her.
While on the subject of service to Cerberus, Miranda hands Rasa a dossier on Mordin Solus, expecting her to do her job before returning to active duty. Her purpose complete, she departs Rasa's room.
An agent's faltering loyalty
Miranda signs an order placing Rasa under indefinite medical observation. The newly-recovered agent learns about it and confronts Miranda while she is attending to Lazarus Project matters. Miranda claims it is for Rasa's own protection as the poison she received is yet unknown to Cerberus: until they learn more and are certain of Rasa's well-being, she is to stay put.
Rasa doesn't buy it and insists on more disclosure. Miranda warily confronts her with the fact she's aware of Rasa's repeated attempts to access restricted Lazarus Project files. She warns Rasa to resume her work with the dossiers: to answer Rasa's earlier query if she is a prisoner, Miranda responds that Cerberus doesn't take prisoners.
Rasa has just concluded reading Zaeed Massani's dossier, returning her attention to the tank containing Commander Shepard's clone. Miranda watches her from a live feed, and comms the Illusive Man to report a problem with the agent. In her correspondence, Miranda reports Rasa's dangerous levels of savvy and knowledge about the Lazarus Project. She receives the advice to cut Cerberus losses if Rasa becomes a liability.
In a command center at Lazarus Research Station in 2184 CE, Miranda monitors a ship of turian design when her subordinates report anomalies. The clone lab grows dark, nearby surveillance cameras broadcast images of Blasto instead, and suddenly the station's security systems and mainframe are compromised. Miranda recognizes Rasa's treachery and begins mobilizing a mixed human/mech security team. They are drenched by the fire suppression system in the search, prompting Miranda to curse Rasa aloud.
Miranda and her team find Rasa at an airlock, suiting up for a spacewalk. She biotically assaults Rasa and her LOKI Mech, raging that Kai Leng was right in his assessment at having Rasa killed. Rasa's LOKI opens fire, catching one of Miranda's soldiers, but Miranda projects a [w:c:masseffect:Barrier|barrier]] for herself and gives the kill order to the rest of her squad. The squad's LOKI and YMIR Mechs go haywire and shoot Miranda's human team instead, revealing Rasa's hand in reprogramming them as well. Miranda angrily pries into Rasa's reasons for deserting, who replies she is taking her life back.
After somehow dealing with the mechs Miranda suits up, takes an M-13 Raptor sniper rifle, and resumes pursuit at the station's outer hull. She fires at Rasa's LOKI once she gets close enough, determined not to let the clone be stolen. Rasa tries to erode Miranda's loyalty to the Illusive Man, to no effect as Miranda credits the Cerberus leader for saving her when she was young.
In Miranda's view, Rasa is an ingrate who wasted the opportunities Cerberus gave her, lecturing her while locking the LOKI in biotics. She listens to Rasa prattle on with her notions of freedom while on the approach. However, the LOKI manages to restrain her at the last moment. Miranda destroys it, but it's already too late. Her biotic shots at Rasa's fleeing Kodiak shuttle miss.
Miranda tracks the shuttle to its last known location at the Arcturus system. She assembles a retrieval team as she speaks with the Illusive Man, but he tells her to cancel as he already deems the issue irrelevant. Miranda silently absorbs her boss' assessment.
Destruction of the Lazarus Research Station
By the year 2185 CE, Miranda oversees the final development and implementation of Cerberus' vast resources towards bringing Shepard back to life. When Shepard briefly wakes for the first time, Miranda is the first and last person seen by Shepard before falling back to sleep. At some point, the research base comes under attack by a saboteur. Miranda wakes Shepard over an intercom and guides the Commander to the base's last shuttle. Miranda takes Shepard to be briefed by the Illusive Man, but not before killing the traitor who instigated the attack.
Investigation of Freedom's Progress
When Shepard goes to investigate the colony of Freedom's Progress, Miranda becomes a permanent squad member. Aboard the Normandy SR-2 she functions as Shepard's second-in-command, but also serves as a proxy for the Illusive Man, which means she can override Commander Shepard's orders in certain situations. According to EDI, Miranda is the leading operative of the Lazarus Cell which is headquartered on the Normandy.
During the mission Miranda asks Shepard for help with a personal crisis and admits she has a twin, Oriana, created as part of her father's intended dynasty. She explains that the reason she joined Cerberus was to hide and protect Oriana as well as herself. While their father stopped searching for Miranda, he never stopped looking for Oriana.
With the help of Cerberus, Miranda managed to establish a new life for Oriana on Illium, where she has lived the life of normalcy their father would have denied her. Unfortunately, Miranda received word from a contact claiming that their father has finally discovered Oriana and will try to abduct her. Cerberus has made arrangements to relocate Oriana, and Miranda went to ensure nothing goes wrong. Shepard and Miranda battle their way through Eclipse mercenaries and take an elevator to a floor above, to the surprise of Miranda she finds an old childhood friend, Niket she had not forgotten about him but he was the only person who knew about Miranda's sister.
When she learns of Niket's treachery, Miranda contemplates executing him where he stands. After some intense but swift decision making, Miranda analyzes her options at a speed typically which she is also known for and is prevented from killing Niket. After fighting more mercenaries who had been discussing a plan of action with Niket, Oriana is safe and likely oblivious to the plot against her life, Shepard tells Miranda to speak with her sister as she is reluctant to do so without Shepard's prompt for her to do so.
Either way, the mission ends with Miranda's mind somewhat at rest and her sister safe, for now.
Final battle and defection
During the final maiden voyage against the Collectors], Miranda is presented as a candidate for the role of Squad Leader and is present during the fight with the Human-Reaper, siding with Shepard over the Illusive Man when the commander opts to destroy the Collector Base. The Illusive Man orders her to stop Shepard, but Miranda refuses and announces that she is resigning from Cerberus.
Miranda and the Normandy crew survive the final battle and remains with Shepard for some time.
On the run
Miranda returns to fight the Reapers in 2186. Since the destruction of the Collector base, she has since left Cerberus and indicated that the Illusive Man now wants her eliminated, causing her to go on the run again for a while.
Reunion with an old friend
Shepard gets a message from Miranda asking to meet on the Citadel at Docking Bay D24 one mission after rescuing turian Primarch Adrien Victus for a war summit. Miranda expresses her concerns that her sister Oriana had been found by her father.
Miranda later sends a message to Shepard to meet her in a private room on the Citadel. Once Shepard arrives, Miranda asks him for control of Alliance resources, but refuses to reveal the reason for it. Although not liking what he's hearing, Shepard allows her access. After making this decision, Miranda confesses her guilt for wanting to implant a control-chip into Shepard's brain during their reconstruction, as that time she felt Shepard was a complete unknown. Shepard comforts her saying that it was Miranda who brought them back to life, regardless of her opinions about them back then and tells her not to dwell on the past.
Skirmish on Sanctuary
Miranda eventually confirms that her sister was indeed taken by their father. Once she learns that, it wasn't difficult for her to find her father's Sanctuary facility on Horizon. She arrives at Sanctuary, only to find it under attack from Reaper forces. She attempts to keep them out of the facility and locates the jamming signal that is blocking all off-world communications. She leaves several video logs, revealing Sanctuary's true purpose and confirming that Henry Lawson is working for the Illusive Man. She, however, is unaware of Kai Leng's presence, who attacks her.
Commander Shepard's team soon arrives on Horizon after Cerberus retrieves the Prothean VI from Thessia. They see the video logs left by Miranda and reaches the central tower to find Miranda badly hurt. Henry is holding Oriana as a human shield and keeping Miranda at gunpoint. As Shepard is able defuse the situation diplomatically, Miranda takes the initiative to marshal her biotics and kill her father, tossing him out the window and send him plummeting to his death.
As soon as she is able to recover, Miranda tells Shepard she had the time to place a tracking device on Kai Leng during their short encounter, allowing Shepard and the Alliance to find the Illusive Man's base of operations. She then leaves with her sister, and asks Shepard to be careful.
Assisting the war effort
Miranda eventually joins the Citadel Allied Forces, getting a few sideways looks from Alliance brass due to her Cerberus past. Aside from providing valuable anti-Cerberus intel, she procures a private fighter for herself, teaming up with former colleagues to strike at Cerberus targets. These deeds and more earn her the tacit approval of the Alliance forces she's working with.
After Shepard retakes the Normandy from his clone, Miranda receives an invitation to Shepard's apartment on the Citadel for a drink. During the conversation she'd tell what little she knew about Maya Brooks: all Miranda knew is that Maya was the one who compiled the dossiers for Shepard's team in the mission against the Collectors, and nothing more because Miranda was focused on bringing Shepard back alive at that time.
After these events, Miranda is seen wearing a red dress at the Silver Coast Casino and invites Shepard. She confesses that she is trying to spend an evening like normal people would for a change, but is having difficulty doing so.
During Shepard's big party, Miranda hangs out at the bar with Joker and EDI, indignant at Joker's portrayal of Cerberus' incompetence when all she was in charge of at the time was bringing Shepard back to life. She congratulates Jacob after learning of his fatherhood. Jacob replies he's a little scared at the prospect, and Miranda assures him that his being a protector goes a long way. She then asks Joker if he has no other "plans" after EDI, preferably someone more human. Joker replies in the negative because according to him EDI's smart, funny, and "into spaceships." Whatever the case, Miranda declares she can respect Joker knowing what he wants.
At the party's second phase, Miranda is lounging at the bar in the poker den with Jack. Both of them take turns insulting each other, with Miranda making pointed references to Jack's unconventional hair, uncouth manner, childish behavior, victim complex, and underdeveloped assets. Shepard jokes about the existence of "sexual tension" between the "two powerful biotics"; both with "forceful personalities" and "confident in their sexuality". Miranda covers her face in embarrassment at this, Jack responds in her usual manner, and both of them order drinks to recover from the moment. Miranda concedes later that Cerberus was wrong about Jack, finding the fact she grew as a person despite what Cerberus did to her extremely admirable. Jack praises Miranda's "fantastic tits" even though she still hates the ex-Cerberus biotic, and Miranda, amused, shrugs it off.
At the party's third phase, Miranda joins Liara, Jacob and James at the balcony, watching Liara demonstrate biotic supremacy. Everyone there decides to dance once Shepard checks in on them.
In the morning after, Miranda is seated at the kitchen's center aisle, watching Vega cook eggs.
Battle to retake Earth
Shepard takes one last chance to talk to Miranda on Earth one last time, right before the final assault. Miranda takes the moment to say her final goodbyes, claiming that everything would be different if they even come out alive. Shepard refuses to hear any of it, countering that if things change it will be on their terms. Miranda ran all her life, and Shepard advises her that it is time to stop. Miranda's spirits are uplifted at Shepard's words, and in contrast to her earlier statements of "no promises" whenever Shepard bids her well she now promises to take care of herself at the end of their conversation.
A new beginning
Following the allied forces' victory against the Reapers, Miranda is seen in a boardroom helping lead reconstruction efforts.
List of characters killed by Miranda
The following is a list of characters Miranda Lawson has killed:
Personality and traits
- “I’m never wrong. I thought you’d have learned that by now, Jacob.”
- —Miranda Lawson to Jacob Taylor
When first introduced, Miranda is shown to be very cold and uncaring, as shown by her ruthless execution of Wilson for his betrayal and believing everyone except Shepard to be expendable. She is also shown to be quite arrogant; when Jacob Taylor questions her actions, she claims that she is never wrong and that he should have learned that by then. However, this is shown not be a complete boast as the Illusive Man also states that she isn't usually wrong.
However, during her loyalty mission, her true personality is revealed; a deeply self-loathing individual whose years of abuse as well as the nature of her existence have left her feeling that she does not deserve credit for any of her accomplishments. Her frosty personality is simply a façade to hide her insecurities. She is also deeply fond and protective of her genetically identical younger sister Oriana, and has gone to great lengths to keep her safe, even going so far as to avoid revealing to her that she exists. Notably after Shepard persuades her to get closer to her sister she is so emotionally affected that she is shown to be crying.
Though not terribly overt, Miranda occasionally displays signs of a dry wit and enjoys the time she spends with Shepard.
Despite being a member of Cerberus for most of the Collector crisis, Miranda is atypical of the average operative, being pro-human as opposed to outright xenophobic and in fact laments how so many join Cerberus for no other reason than xenophobia. She also respects the salarian geneticist Dr. Mordin Solus and admires the accomplishments of the asari. She also displays very clear moral standards multiple times, not the least of which is her objection to the Illusive Man's plan of keeping the Collector Base intact (a base that had liquefied millions of humans alive). After Shepard destroyed the Collector Base, Miranda applauds the commander's decision, and also outright resigns from Cerberus in response to the Illusive Man's ordering her to stop Shepard.
During her time as director of Project Lazarus, Initially, Miranda expressed skepticism towards the level of importance the Illusive Man has placed on Shepard, especially since the Lazarus Project required a huge investment of four billion credits and her own time. She also notes that she wanted to implant Shepard with a control chip in his brain to regulate his actions, but the Illusive Man refused. Soon after their mission gets underway, Miranda admits that the Illusive Man's estimation of Shepard's value to their cause was accurate. Afterwards, she feels deep remorse as she believes that wanting something to control made her like her father, something she risked her life to prevent Oriana from becoming. She still feels regretful even when the Reapers arrive in 2186, when she finally apologizes to Shepard for how she felt at the time.
Miranda is a tall, curvaceous woman in her mid-thirties. She has a light skin complexion, a rather sizeable bust, steel blue eyes and shoulder-length jet black hair.
She wears a very tight white leather uniform, black gloves and black, knee-high heeled boots, making her anatomy’s propensity for the superiorly-placed, powerfully-developed and nigh-spherical due to her being designed to be the pinnacle of "perfection".
Different camera angles and shots her figure were employed to focus on "her curves and sexuality", identified as key parts of her character, her being someone genetically engineered to be "perfect" and a femme fatale.
Skills and abilities
- “Worried about my qualifications? I can crush a mech with my biotics or shoot its head off at a hundreds yards. Take your pick.”
- —Miranda Lawson to Commander John Shepard
- Biotics: Miranda possesses biotic enhancements, which are a futuristic version of telekinesis. She is able to produce barriers for defensive capabilities. As far as offensive capabilities are concerned, she can pick up a mech and throw it across the room with immense velocity with little ill-effect on herself. She can also cause a concentrated gravitational 'implosion' on an object.
- Mental conditioning: Alongside all her physical traits and advantages, Miranda has obtained many mental improvements. She is a born leader who never ceases to work at optimal capacity and concentration. She controls her emotions better than most, even denying them sometimes in favor of the mission at hand. She is incredibly intelligent and is able to process information at a much faster rate than an average human, with even more accuracy.
- Superior physique: Due to the biological enhancements of her DNA, Miranda is at the absolute perfect state that a human female can possibly attain. This covers a wide range of areas, such as athleticism, reflexes, sensory perception and even her appearance. Her cells perform at optimal capacity, thus she heals much quicker than a standard human could. She also is predicted to live at least half a lifespan longer than most other humans. Miranda also boasts that she can perfectly shoot a mech in the head from 100 meters away, or tear it apart with her biotics.
- Human vulnerabilities: Miranda's greatest weakness is that she is quite vulnerable to the physical attacks of stronger and more powerful opponents. However, she usually compensates for this quite well with her exceptional intellect and biotic capabilities.
Appearances in other media
- Mass Effect: Foundation
- Mass Effect: Redemption
- Mass Effect Galaxy (First appearance)
- Mass Effect 2
- Mass Effect 3
- Mass Effect: A Hero's Legacy
- (to the Illusive Man) "Shepard did everything right. More than we could've hoped for. [...] The Council will never trust Cerberus, they'll never accept our help. Even after everything humanity has accomplished. But Shepard... they'll follow him. He's a hero, a bloody icon... but he's just one man. If we lose Shepard, humanity might well follow."
- "The Reapers are still out there."
- "I’m very good at just about anything I choose to do. My reflexes, my strength, even my looks – they’re all designed to give me an edge. It’s the reason I’m trusted to oversee the most dangerous, risky and technically demanding operations Cerberus undertakes. Everyone expects a lot from someone with my… abilities."
- (about Omega) "What a pisshole. At least it keeps you on your toes. I've had to come here on business before. I feel like I need a shower afterward — in addition to normal decontamination."
- "I've proven my loyalty to the Illusive Man. Let's hope you're able to do the same."
- (about the Dark Star club) "Looking for a little R&R, Shepard? It's a nice enough place. A lot nicer than Chora's Den anyway. I wasn't sorry to hear they never reopened after the geth attack."
- "It’s always been like this. My father gave me anything I wanted, but there was always a hook, an angle for his long-term plan. I threw away everything he ever gave me when I ran."
- (after Niket's betrayal) "My father hurt me, but he didn't break me. As much as he tried to turn me into exactly what he wanted... I'm my own person."
- (about her meeting with her sister) "I introduced myself. Her family was shocked. She adjusted quickly, of course. She's as smart as I am. She plays the violin, loves the adagio movement of Neilsen's Fifth, just like I do. Wants to work in colony development, made a joke about it. She's really funny, something we don't share..."
- (to Jack) "I can put my differences aside... until the mission's over."
- (to Shepard) "I… I don’t have that fire you have, that makes people want to follow you into hell itself. My father gave me the best genes money could buy. I guess that… it wasn’t enough."
- (to the Illusive Man) "I noticed. Consider this my resignation."
- (to Shepard) "They should've listened to you a long time ago."
- "Nobody's perfect."
- (after biotically throwing her father to his death) "...NO DEAL."
Mass Effect: A Hero's Legacy
- "Indeed, we truly live in interesting times."
- Miranda is voiced by and her appearance is modeled after Australian actress Yvonne Strahovski.
- Her original surname was Solheim, Norwegian for "Sunhome." This was chosen in part because she is one of the relatively rare characters born on Earth (i.e. from the Sol system). Miranda's name translates as 'she who must be admired', apt considering she was engineered for perfection.
- Early concepts of Miranda portrayed her as a blonde, but once they created her Cerberus uniform, black hair seemed to better complement the "femme fatale" look.
- Given Jacob's dialogue with Shepard, it is possible that Miranda might have been romantically involved with Jacob at some point.
- Miranda is genetically engineered to be a woman with a perfect body.
- Due to her irregular genetic makeup and the progressive damage inflicted by the benign neoplasm, Miranda is infertile and unable to conceive a child.
- She has had a troubling past with her father who also saw her as more an object than a daughter.
- Seeking protection from Cerberus, Miranda has obtained a very high rank, and is a very trusted lieutenant in the Illusive Man's organization. Trusted enough that she may attend his presence in person.