Astrid Schaeffer is a human woman who worked as a waitress in Berlin when she encountered Niska who was living undercover pretending to be human. The two soon started a romantic relationship.
Astrid is an open-minded free spirit who values honesty and doesn't judge people easily. She cares about humans and synths alike, and will go to great lengths for someone she cares about.
Season 2 Edit
Astrid first sees Niska in a club she frequents, and approaches her. At first, Niska walks away, but Astrid follows her, assuring Niska that she just wants to dance with her. The two later retreats back to Niska's, where they hook up. The next day, they go to a café together, and Niska asks Astrid about her attraction to women, and if she'd want to 'create life' if she could. Believing Niska is talking about having children, Astrid assures her that anyone can have a child, and 'you just have to show them the way'. This inspires Niska to release the consciousness code. Six weeks later, Niska is seen waiting for Astrid after work, and they go back to Niska's. Astrid wants to see Niska's "scar" (actually her charging port), but Niska backs away. Being frustrated with being kept at a distance, Astrid leaves. Later, Niska approaches Astrid to tell her she is needed elsewhere. Astrid wants her to stay, but Niska apologizes and leaves.
Laura calls in Astrid as a witness to Niska's trial. Niska is in a glass box when Astrid arrives, wearing blue contacts by Laura's request. Laura asks Astrid questions about Niska and their relationship. She says that her first impression of Niska was that she was 'the saddest and most beautiful girl' Astrid had ever seen, and recounts how she immediately went to the airport after learning Niska needed her. Laura then asks how she felt when she figured out Niska wasn't human, which confuses Astrid who up until that moment had no idea Niska was really a synth. After learning the truth, she is shocked, but states she still considers Niska to be human. The two later talk alone, and Astrid asks Niska why she lied to her. Niska admits she didn't want Astrid to stop liking her, and Astrid tells her she didn't. She then has to leave, but looks back at Niska as she walks away.
Astrid is now staying at a rented flat in Folkestone. When walking downstairs one early morning, she finds Niska sitting at the couch, smiling and greeting her. After a moment, Astrid smiles back.
Laura tracks down Astrid's new address, now living in Folkestone, Kent and arrives there asking for Niska. Astrid pretends she hasn't seen her, but after learning that her family is in danger, Niska comes out of hiding. However, she doesn't want to go stop Leo and Mia from breaking into Qualia, but rather stay with Astrid. Astrid and Niska are then forced to go on the run when it is revealed that Laura was tricked into leading the authorities to Niska.
Astrid and Niska can be seen at the train station, ready to leave for Berlin. However, Astrid can sense that Niska isn't really present, but rather thinking about her family. She encourages her to go help them, and assures her she'll be waiting for her in Berlin.
Season 3 Edit
Astrid is working in a London bar, called Bar Mix, that is open to humans and synths alike. At the end of Astrid's shift, Niska shows up, wanting for them to leave. Astrid has her wait, as the owner of the bar is holding a speech about all of the human and synth lives lost at "day 0", a year earlier. She then goes to use the bathroom while Niska waits outside the bar. However, just as Astrid is leaving the bar, there's an explosion. Astrid is hurt, but survives. When Astrid sees that Niska has lost one of her blue contacts, she pleads with her to leave. Reluctantly, Niska does. Later, Astrid can be seen lying in a hospital bed, a police officer guarding the room.
Astrid is lying in her hospital bed when a nurse gives her a phone, telling Astrid it's her aunt Ursula calling. However, it's actually Niska. Niska asks how she's doing, and Astrid says she'll be okay. Niska has figured out that the police knows about Astrid's connection to Niska, and tells her to say that Niska held her prisoner, but Astrid refuses. Niska tells Astrid she'll track down the person who hurt her. Astrid begs her not do that, but Niska says she has to because she loves her. Astrid tells her she loves her too, and they hang up.
Astrid is sitting in a chair in her hospital room and eating when a synthetic nurse enters the room. The nurse is actually Niska, wearing orange contacts from a Halloween costume. Niska tells Astrid she had to see her, and asks how she is. Niska then tells Astrid that she found the terrorist who hurt her, and that "he won't hurt anyone else". Astrid is not happy about hearing this, and reminds Niska that she asked her not to do this. She further tells Niska that Niska didn't do this for Astrid, but for herself, and asks if she feels better now. Niska doesn't answer, and understanding that she's preoccupied with something else, Astrid asks her what it is. Niska tells her that she received a message, but that it's probably a trap. Astrid answers: "But what if it isn't?"
Astrid is sitting on her bed when a nurse comes into the room with a phone. It's Niska calling pretending to be Astrid's aunt again, and Astrid happily answers. Astrid tells Niska she'll be coming home the next day and that the police no longer seems interested in her. Astrid asks Niska where she is, and when Niska answers "Wales", Astrid wonders what Niska's doing there. Niska answers that she doesn't know. Astrid wonders if Niska will be back when she gets home from the hospital, and Niska starts to say "off course", but stops mid-word. Astrid keeps trying to reach Niska by calling for her, and Niska finally picks the phone back up, and tells Astrid that there's something she needs to do before coming home, but that she can't explain what. On the verge of tears, Astrid begs her to come home, but instead of answering Niska tells Astrid she loves her. Astrid tells her she loves her, too.
Niska is Astrid's girlfriend. The two first met in Berlin, where they dated for six weeks before Niska left to stand trial in the UK. They met again when Laura called Astrid to be a witness at the trial, which is where she learned that Niska is a synth. She didn't care, and the two got back together, with Astrid permanently moving to London and getting a job at a synth friendly bar. Their relationship is very sweet, and the two have a lot of trust and respect in one another. Even though Niska is hard to read, even for a synth, Astrid has no problem doing so, even being able to tell when she's lying. Astrid and Niska has both shown that they're willing to risk a lot for the other, always putting the other's safety first.
Astrid and Laura first meet when Laura calls her and asks her to be a witness at Niska's trial. Laura knowingly keeps Astrid in the dark about the fact that Niska is a synth, but does so because it's in Niska's best interest. When Laura tries to find Niska after she escapes, Astrid protects Niska by saying she hasn't seen her. The tone between the two at this point is quite tense. Laura also unwittingly leads the police to Niska and Astrid's whereabouts.
- We Are People considers Astrid a "possible traitor to the human cause".
- In 3.1, we see Astrid working as a bartender, at a bar called Bar Mix. In reality, the street that they used was Toynbee Street, in the borough of Tower Hamlets.