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Sat Jul 6th, 2024 @ 2:41am

Commander Hikari Karibuchi

Name Hikari Karibuchi

Position Commanding Officer

Second Position Commanding Officer

Rank Commander


Character Information

Gender Female
Species Human
Age 32

Physical Appearance

Height 5'3"
Weight 112 lbs
Hair Color Chocolate Brown
Eye Color Light Brown
Physical Description Commander Karibuchi sports a fairly modest build; at 5’3”, she’s a teensy bit shorter than most women her age, but its pounds on an elephant so far as she’s concerned. She prefers to grow her Chocolate Brown hair to shoulder length, with a green hair clip framing the left side of her bangs.

Family

Spouse None
Children None
Father Lieutenant Commander Yuta Karibuchi [currently serving as Chief Operations Officer aboard the USS Republic (NCC-81371)]
Mother Lieutenant Commander Miki Karibuchi [currently serving as Chief Flight Control Officer aboard the USS Republic (NCC-81371)]
Brother(s) None
Sister(s) Captain Takami Karibuchi [Older- currently serving as Commanding Officer of the USS Hornet (NCC-42025)]
Other Family Kenji Karibuchi [Uncle - currently works as the manager of the Harry F. Cooke Lounge aboard the USS Missouri (NCC-78316)]
Hideo Karibuchi (Cousin - 9 years old)

Personality & Traits

General Overview As the daughter of two Starfleet officers, Commander Karibuchi is a determined, good-hearted individual who is eager to prove herself as a leader. Modelling herself after many of the post-war heroes of her youth— perhaps most notably among those being one Admiral Kathryn Burke, the Commanding Officer of Theta Fleet— she strives to be an active part of her crew’s day-to-day lives, as she’s a firm believer in respect being something that’s earned, not simply given. She can be a bit bull-headed at times—especially when her leadership skills are brought into question—but now that she’s a full-time captain, she’s putting in a considerable amount of effort to try and reign in her pride.

As a consequence of her desire to step out of her older sister’s shadow and be held on her own merits, Commander Karibuchi is committed to doing what’s right, which can often see her exceeding, or at times overextending her limits. However, it is likewise this determination that sees her fullest commitment to seeing her assignments through to completion, which can often breed creative approaches to solving problems.
Strengths & Weaknesses + A quick thinker with a penchant for creative solutions.
+ Tries to see the best in others, even if it sometimes goes against her gut instinct.
+/- Driven to do what’s right, even where others would back down.
- Can get defensive when her leadership skills are criticized.
- Occasionally overexerts herself in her duties.
Ambitions While Commander Karibuchi holds a great deal of respect for her older sister, she aspires to step out of her shadow and be held as a distinguished leader in her own right.

Personal History Hikari Karibuchi was born on May 26, 2371, aboard the USS Republic (NCC-81371), a Miranda-Class light cruiser. Her parents were both charismatic and highly-respected members of the Republic’s senior staff, with her father, Yuta, serving as the ship’s Chief of Operations and her mother, Miki, serving as the Chief Flight Control Officer. Their case was a classic Starfleet love story, with the two of them having been assigned to the Republic fresh out of the Academy and hitting it up almost immediately. So close was their bond that they had passed up several opportunities to be reassigned to a larger vessel because they couldn’t guarantee that the other would be assigned with them. So it came as no surprise, then, that the two were eventually wed in 2365 and welcomed their first child- a girl, named Takami- in 2367, with Hikari following four years later. With little to no other children on board at the time, the two Karibuchi girls were absolutely adored by the Republic’s senior staff, and the first two years of Hikari’s life were filled with joy and laughter.

However, with the outbreak of the Dominion War just a couple years later, Hikari and Takami were sent to live with their paternal grandparents for their safety. At barely two years old, Hikari was too young to process the full extent of what was happening—only that there were bad people out there who wanted to hurt their family. Why exactly anyone would feel so mean as to want to hurt them was a question that eluded her, but her parents assured her that they were going to do everything in their power to ensure that didn’t happen. This left a fairly strong impression on the young Hikari, as standing up to bad, hurtful people seemed like a very brave thing to do. Inevitably, this impression of her parents—and, by extension, Starfleet as a greater whole—would be the catalyst that set her on a path to joining Starfleet herself.

As she began Preschool on Earth, Hikari was known by teachers and classmates alike to be a rather rambunctious tot- perhaps to a fault. In one particular incident, her teacher found her attempting to unscrew a vent cover for the air conditioning unit with a toy screwdriver. When asked about her unusual behaviour, she explained that she “wanted to play in the Jefferies Tubes.” She was given a timeout, but when the incident was relayed to her grandparents, they realized in that moment that her place in life was aboard a starship.

And so it came to pass, when the Treaty of Bajor was signed in 2375, the Karibuchi sisters were finally reunited with their parents; per their grandparents’ suggestion, the two of them resumed their tutelage privately aboard the Republic, with a more personalized study program aimed to help them prepare for a career in Starfleet, which Hikari’s grandparents felt that both she and Takami were inevitably gravitating towards. Perhaps not surprisingly, both girls took to this program with gusto, learning about the fundamentals of Starfleet and what it stood for, its history, and the day-to-day operations of various Starships, Starbases, Colonies, and similar Federation-affiliated outposts. This gave the two of them a much broader respect for Starfleet as an organization, as well as the various tasks that the crew of a Starship had to perform in order to keep their vessel running smoothly. Takami in particular showed a fascination with piloting smaller craft, taking after her mother’s preferred field of Flight Control. Hikari, in the meantime, took more after her father, with organizational strategies and critical thinking skills that placed her firmly in the field of Operations. Yuta and Miki, for their part, couldn’t be happier that their girls wanted to be just like them, and (during routine operations, when the Captain permitted) even allowed Takami and Hikari onto the bridge so they could a better feel for what it was like to serve in their respective fields.

Of course, life on board the Republic wasn’t wholly devoted to preparing them for adulthood; when the two sisters got time to be kids (and, eventually, teenagers), they were virtually inseparable. They hung out in the Jefferies Tubes, held study sessions in the main lounge, and stayed up past their bedtime camped out in a pillow fort in their parents’ quarters, eating graham crackers by the light of their father’s palm beacon and sharing stories of some the greatest Starfleet officers that ever lived. These were perhaps some of Hikari’s fondest memories growing up, and cemented both her drive to excel and earn a place in history amongst such esteemed individuals, as well as the unique bond that she shared with her older sister.

Alas, such carefree days were but short and fleeting, as upon turning 18, Takami applied for (and was successfully accepted into) Starfleet Academy’s Flight Control program. At a full four years older than Hikari, it was inevitable that the two girls would never cross paths in the Academy, and once they did eventually graduate, there was no guarantee that they’d be assigned to the same posting, or for how long. All that factored into consideration, it was still difficult for Hikari to say goodbye to her older sister, as up to that point in her life, Takami had always been there. That first year on her own wasn’t much easier, for while she still had the support of her parents, Hikari now began to seriously reckon with changing times and the inevitable fact that she would be assigned away from loved ones for extended periods of time. Her grades inevitably took a dip as result of her self-doubting, and there were a few nights where she seriously considered giving up on chasing her dreams. However, as she gradually adjusted to the new norm, she finally came around to accepting that Takami wouldn’t have wanted her to give up for her sake, and doubled back down on her studies. Her grades began to improve, and even her parents were impressed with how quickly she had bounced back.

With renewed determination, Hikari submitted her application for Starfleet Academy in the spring of 2389. With the past 14 years of her life having built up to this point, the application process was no cakewalk, and even she was a little surprised when she received a letter of acceptance on the first try. For Yuta and Miki, however, they couldn’t be happier that both of their baby girls were finally coming up in the universe, and to celebrate Hikari’s acceptance into the Academy, they held a going-away party for her in the Republic’s lounge, where Hikari was visited by a surprise guest: the recently-graduated Ensign Takami Karibuchi, having completed her studies and pending her first assignment. The reunion was bittersweet, as a lot had changed for Takami in the past four years, and now her younger sister would be sharing in those very same experiences. For old time’s sake, the two sisters spent their brief time together camped out in that very same pillow fort, eating graham crackers and catching up on everything that Hikari had missed.

Academy life was a whole different beast for Hikari, as now she was getting some first-hand experience in her roles and responsibilities as an Operations officer, including resource and priority allocation, low-level conflict resolution, interpreting telemetry readings, anticipating mission requirements and possible conflicts, and collaborating with Security to assess and potential security concerns in crisis situations. Having studied intently for this, Hikari took to this new curriculum with gusto, and while she was a straight-A student as far as her grades were concerned, it was also here that her strong sense of family pride began to show, often times to her detriment. In one noteworthy incident, Hikari got in a fist-fight with another student, Miya Misumi, when the latter allegedly made a snide remark about “Starfleet babies being born with a silver spoon in their mouths.” The two were written up for their behaviour, and while Hikari would go on to admit that she could’ve handled the situation a bit better, she maintained that she had no reason to apologize for socking Miya; In her opinion, Miya had reasonably provoked it.

Attitude notwithstanding, Hikari Karibuchi graduated 4th in her class in the spring of 2393 and was assigned to the USS St. George (NCC-64991), a Norway-Class Medium Cruiser. Perhaps not all that surprisingly, she took to her first assignment like a duck on water, and she quickly garnered a reputation for being a dependable officer who could be counted upon to get done whatever was asked of her. This overly-dedicated work ethic wasn’t without it’s occasional faults, however, as there were times where Hikari would become so caught up in her duties that she’d work herself to the point of exhaustion, but it did little to dampen her spirits; as far as she was concerned, a full 12 hours on her feet was more fulfilling than 1 hour off of them. It came as no surprise, then, that this dedication to duty saw her steadily rising through the ranks, and by 2397 she had already been promoted to Assistant Chief of Ops.

In 2398, duty rotations came up and Hikari discovered that a full Chief of Operations position had recently opened up aboard the USS Bonhomme Richard (NCC-63958), an Akira-Class Heavy Escort. While she was hesitant to let the crew of the St. George go, as this had been her first ever assignment and she felt the crew had become somewhat reliant on her for her dependability, the St. George’s current Chief of Ops maintained that he was intending to stick around for a few more years, so with no prospects of moving up on board the St. George itself, she felt it was time to move on.

With this assignment being her first ever turn as a full-on department head, Hikari felt she had a newfound sense of duty; for the first time in her fledgling Starfleet career, people were going to be looking to her for guidance. With such a daunting responsibility on her shoulders, Hikari took it upon herself to get to know every single member of her department— right down to the last Crewman Recruit— and try to be an active part of their lives; she’d endeavour to visit them in her free time, listen to them when they needed someone with whom to air their concerns, and even do them a few menial favours without asking anything in return. For her, earning their respect was more than enough, because respect went a long way in situations where it mattered.

Word of her interminable compassion towards her subordinates eventually made its way up to the Bonhomme Richard’s Command Staff, whose Second Officer was in his late 80s and getting ready to retire within a year’s time. Recognizing that this sort of sentimentality was exactly what he was looking for in a 2XO, the ship’s Commanding Officer, one Captain Bertram Ramsey, took Hikari aside and offered her the position. Hikari was evidently surprised at the offer, as up to that point, a position in Command hadn’t even crossed her mind; were she left to her own devices, she would’ve been perfectly content just performing her duties as Chief of Ops, just like her father had. However, she certainly wasn’t the type of officer to look a gift horse in the mouth, and though Command was going to be a whole other ballgame for her, she told Ramsey that she was more than up to the challenge.

The next sixth months leading up to the incumbent 2XO’s retirement saw Hikari undergoing preliminary Command training, to help ease her into the duties she would be expected to perform, should Captain Ramsey and his XO be unavailable. It was here that she got the chance to take the Kobayashi Maru test for the first time, and she soon became so obsessed with beating the scenario (which was purposely designed to be unwinnable) that there were reports that Captain Ramsey had to lock Hikari out of the holodeck. But in spite of her persistence on trying to win a scenario that could not be won, her dedication to preserving lives—even fictional ones—showed a certain quality of selflessness in Hikari that Ramsey felt was becoming of a true leader. And so it came to pass, at the 2XO’s retirement party where Hikari was set to officially assume her role as the ship’s Second Officer, that she was met with a standing ovation on behalf of the Bonhomme Richard’s crew. It was perhaps one of only a few times in Hikari’s life where she cried in public.

The next year saw Hikari growing closer with not just her department, but her crew at large; when she wasn’t performing her regular duties on the bridge, she was assisting Engineering realign a plasma conduit, helping Sciences care for the plants in the botany lab, restocking medical supplies in sickbay, servicing the shuttles with Flight Control, and any other number of menial tasks that could help her in gaining the respect of her crew. Captain Ramsey was deeply impressed with how far Hikari was willing to go out of her way just to get to know her crew better, and on the rare occasion where she didn’t have any prior commitments, he’d invite her to afternoon tea in his quarters, where he’d impart with her some of his early experiences from when he was first starting out in Starfleet.

In early 2399, the Bonhomme Richard was in layover at the Utopia Planitia Fleetyards for the annual Utopia Aerospace Exhibition. While most of the festivities that year centred around the public unveiling of the Excelsior II-Class Intel Heavy Cruiser, as well as formal launch of the prototype, the USS Excelsior (NX-42037), Hikari, for her part, had a much more low-key affair when she had a chance encounter with the recently-promoted Captain Takami Karibuchi. As if seeing her sister sporting a full four pips wasn’t already a pleasant surprise, Hikari was in for a shock when Takami revealed that she had been gifted command of one of the first Excelsior II cruisers, the USS Hornet (NCC-42025), which was scheduled to be completed later that year. Hikari couldn’t have been prouder of her big sister, though she was inevitably somewhat jealous that Takami had been command of a new, state-of-the-art Intel cruiser while she was the Second Officer of an aging (but proud) Akira. However, as the two of them caught up with what they had missed in the six-or-so years since they’d last spoken, the elder Karibuchi approached Hikari with a proposition; with her recent appointment to the Hornet, she would subsequently be vacating her position as Executive Officer aboard her previous assignment, the Luna-Class USS Mayflower (NCC-80113). The Mayflower’s Commanding officer, Captain AJ Diffie, was still on the lookout for a replacement XO, and so Takami inquired if Hikari would potentially be interested in assuming her vacated seat. While it would once again mean leaving behind a crew who had come to develop a great deal of respect for her, Hikari was more than honored at the chance to fill in for her sister, and at the first available opportunity, formally submitted her transfer orders to the Mayflower. Captain Ramsey was evidently a little saddened to see Hikari go, but acknowledged that her interminable spirit would become a vital asset for crew morale aboard the Mayflower, just like it had been for the Bonhomme Richard.

Life aboard the Mayflower took a little bit of getting used to, as compared to the graceful and eloquent Captain Ramsey, Captain Diffie was a much more simple man by comparison, often spending as much time welding down in Engineering as he did up on the bridge. He was inevitably surprised by how outgoing Hikari was towards his crew, and kept insisting to her that this level of formal acquaintance was hardly necessary. Hikari of course, would smile and assure him that it was the responsibility of the leader to understand their charges before issuing orders, as in order for someone to do something for you; she felt that something had to be given in return.

In January of 2402, Starfleet’s newest and most sophisticated class of Explorer to date, the Constitution III, was launched to great fanfare at the San Francisco Fleet Yards. Heralding a bold new era of exploration, the class was lauded as a striking and clever blend of robust utilitarianism and technological innovation, with several unique and innovative technologies that could only have been dreamed of just five years ago seeing their formal debut aboard the prototype, NX-91775. Of course, such complex new systems required that crews be familiarized with their usage; as such, Starfleet opened a special Command Seminar that was available to anyone who served at least 10,000 hours in Starfleet. With a set limit of 300 applicants, Hikari seized upon the opportunity to sign up for the seminar, anticipating that a time might come in her life where she may be required to familiarize herself with the innovative new firmware. The next three months saw her and some 300 perspective officers, including Wolf 359 veteran Liam Shaw, El Aurian academic prodigy Maxwell Culver, Cardassian Internment survivor and advocate for sentient rights Lorut Villa, and former Borg and storied Merchant Marine Annika Hansen, converging at Starfleet Academy’s San Francisco campus for an intensive training conference that would see them familiarized with several of the experimental technologies implemented aboard the Constitution III and its contemporaries. Even for Hikari, who was at this point used to working herself to the point of exhaustion, there was a lot from this course to take in, and even when it was all said and done, it was reported that the results from the test would take several months to process. Hikari was perhaps a little disappointed that she wouldn’t know how she placed right away, but at worst, she felt more informed about the prospective technologies she might likely see implemented in the coming year, and would leave things at that until she heard back from her educators.

In April 2403, the Mayflower was in layup for the annual Utopia Aerospace exhibition when they received an urgent distress signal from the USS Titan (NCC-80102-A) that a Borg Cube was presently en route to Sector 001 with the intention of disrupting Frontier Day festivities. Immediately recognizing the threat that the Borg posed, all festivities for that day were cancelled, civilians were hastily evacuated, and all ships within a 2-sector radius were hastily scrambled to meet the Borg threat, regardless of whether or not they were even remotely combat-ready. While Starfleet had successfully fended off the Borg on two prior occasions (once in 2367, and again in 2381), they couldn’t have been anticipating the Borg to be packing an ace up their sleeve; thanks in part to the assistance of gullible Dominion nationalists, virtually all Starfleet-issue transporters that had been installed within the past year were fitted with a genetic control program, which could easily hijack the brain of any individual under the age of 25, as they had not yet developed a proper biological immunity to resist the program. As a consequence, several ships found their younger crew members inexplicably going berserk, and with virtually no time for the unaffected crew members to react, several ships were quickly overwhelmed and destroyed in a matter of minutes. The Mayflower was one of the lucky ones, as Captain Diffie and Commander Karibuchi correctly determined the nature of their situation and organized the unaffected crew members to fight back and regain control of their ship. The next few minutes saw Hikari and her crewmates forced to kill several of their subordinates—an action that was no doubt regrettable, but necessary in order to maintain the upper hand.

When order was eventually restored, several thousand ships, including the Titan, the USS Voyager (NCC-74656-B), the USS Cerberus (NCC-75110), the USS Enterprise (NCC-1701-F), and—perhaps most surprisingly—an older USS Enterprise (NCC-1701-D), hastily pressed back into service and staffed almost entirely by a skeleton crew from the Starfleet Museum’s Athan Prime Campus, where it had previously been on display—convened to meet (and successfully eliminate) the Borg Threat. While the day was saved, and Frontier Day festivities were drawn out over the next month to celebrate Starfleet’s unprecedented third victory against the Borg, Hikari was racked with guilt after having to kill so many officers who had put their trust into her; as a way of self-repentance, she made an effort to attend every funeral of the crew members aboard the Mayflower that were lost in the conflict. And there were many of them—often several in a day, with such frequency that Hikari had to request bereavement so she could attend all of them; she even had to miss out on her 32nd birthday just to attend four funerals scheduled that day. At the end of it all, she was deeply exhausted, and—for perhaps the first time in her Starfleet career—unenthusiastic about returning to duty.

That, however, changed when the results of her seminar finally came in; out of a total of 300 participants, Hikari had placed 6th in terms of scores—higher than Annika Hansen!—and she was subsequently eligible for command of a Constitution III. As if that weren’t already a tremendous honor, she was in for a surprise to discover that her command would be ready for her in just a months’ time; Hull number NCC-91781, the latest in a long line of ships to bear the storied name of Yorktown, had its fitting out expedited in light of the Borg threat and was now due to launch a full four months ahead of schedule. And, what’s further, it would be the first Constitution III ever delivered to Starfleet’s storied Task Force 23, a division that had bred the likes of such esteemed individuals as Samantha York, Alistar Mckeon, Kaede Kayano, Landon Mabrade, Curzon Bennett, and—perhaps above all others—TF23’s commanding officer and a childhood hero of Hikari’s, Admiral Kathryn Burke. To serve amongst such storied individuals was a high honor, and one that Hikari would be hard-pressed to refuse. So, in spite of the exhausting ordeal she had just been through, Hikari formally submitted her transfer orders (which Captain Diffie approved, much to his reluctance) and was shipped out on the first available transport.
Service Record 2389-2393 – Starfleet Academy (Cadet- Operations)
2393-2395 – USS St. George (Ensign- Operations Officer)
2395-2397 – USS St. George (Lieutenant, Junior Grade- Operations Officer)
2397-2398 – USS St. George (Lieutenant- Assistant Chief Operations Officer)
2398-2399 – USS Bonhomme Richard (Lieutenant- Chief Operations Officer)
2399-2400 – USS Bonhomme Richard (Lieutenant Commander- Second Officer/Chief Operations Officer)
2400-2403 – USS Mayflower (Commander- Executive Officer)
2403-???? - USS Yorktown (Commander- Commanding Officer)