- 18 Mission Posts
Wednesday May 19th, 2021 @ 8:29pm
Captain Nilani Azulas
Name Nilani Azulas
Position Commanding Officer
|Starfleet Service Number||NA-12198607-KDA|
|Command Access Authorisation Code||Azulas-8-6-Tango-Lima|
|Voice Authentication Code||Azulas-Omega-Two-One|
|Physical Description||A woman of average height for a Trill, Nilani probably weighs a little less than she should, her slight frame making her look quite fragile – she has broader shoulders but a tiny waist line. She has naturally darker lips, the red colour often making her look as if she wears lipstick. She is fit and energetic, thanks in part to a previous host named Toran. Her body is covered in many of the spots associated with her people and they have a brown colour to them, actually getting darker the further down her body you look. Making the most of her position, she often wears her hair down despite the uniform dress code that usually applies on Starfleet vessels, her brown hair flowing freely over her shoulders. That is not the only uniform code she flouts as she rarely wears the full, standard duty uniform Starfleet issues, instead opting to wear the variants usually afforded to people of her position such as waistcoats.|
|Personality Overview||Nilani is a feisty, determined and focused woman (largely attributed to previous Azulas host, Kalani) intent on carving out her legacy in the fleet and advancing to the upper echelons, but only when the time is right for her. A woman that commands the utmost respect from her crew, usually thanks to stories of her service during the war and later conflicts, Captain Azulas is a woman that any officer worth their salt would want to serve alongside. Due to her outspoken nature and her ability to ruffle feathers, Azulas often finds herself at odds with the brass in the same way that legendary Captain Picard would be. She speaks her mind, offers her opinion and scolds people as she deems appropriate, refusing to suffer fools lightly. Probably why they were so thankful when she demoted herself.
If you ask anyone serving with her, the Captain's brash nature is a small price to pay for the skill and experience she exhibits on the bridge of her ship, with the Trill often considered to be the deciding factor in many a situation. Officer's have been known to request assignment to her command based on her legacy alone with service ranging from the Federation-Klingon conflict, through the Borg Invasion and to the Dominion War. Since then, her reputation has only been enhanced by the role she played in the civil war that engulfed the Starfleet presence in the Gamma Quadrant. Despite her fearsome reputation as a combat leader, Azulas is no warmonger. Her years of service and her subsequent reputation have helped her successfully navigate dozens of first contact missions whilst she has negotiated no less than five different trade pacts and diplomatic treaties.
Nilani, or Lani to her friends, has a great aptitude for Advanced Subspace Geometry and Warp Theory, although the previous Jennica host has provided her with an understanding of Quantum Chemistry following her time as a scientist in Starfleet. Lani is a talented Engineer having spent most of her career at the Advanced Starship Design Bureau and Titan Shipyards before taking on her first assignments in the field. Cool, calm and collected, Nilani is very methodical in her work and prefers time to think things through before acting.
Despite everything, and behind her strong exterior, she is the kindest, most caring person to her friends and fiercely loyal to her engineering colleagues, but she is definitely not to be trifled with.
|Ambitions, Hobbies and Interests||Having served at the Titan Shipyards and as part of the Propulsion Team at the ASDB, Nilani now enjoys her time on Starships, having forged a career for herself among the command ranks, rising to the rank of Rear Admiral prior to her voluntary demotion. Now that she once again commands the ship she became synonymous with, the Captain seeks nothing but the chance to fix the mistakes of Starfleet’s recent past.
Nilani is an avid reader and can often be found relaxing, alone, in the mess facility of her posting with a good book to read. Whilst she sits alone, she doesn’t like silence and the mess facility provides adequate background noise. Unusually for an Engineer, she doesn’t particularly like holodecks and tends to stay away from them. When not reading, she enjoys the company of her friends.
|Strengths and Weaknesses||With a strong understanding of basic warp design, warp theory and warp equations, Lani’s strengths clearly fall into the category of propulsion systems, but despite her specialism in this area, make no mistake, she is highly competent in many other engineering fields. Through the Azulas symbiont, Lani has a number of memories that have improved her abilities in other areas such as science thanks to Jennica’s past as a science officer in the fleet. Toran was an athlete and as such, her stamina has increased which allows her to be more athletic. Kalani has provided the Nilani host with a much stronger sense of right and wrong and the ability to stand up for herself whilst Aissa has given her the gift of being more tolerant of others. Her greatest strength has been her ability to cope with the joining process and having the ability to ensure that the Nilani host has not been overtaken by the Azulas symbiont.
During her time in command, Nilani has developed into a talented tactician and is well versed in matters of intelligence, politics, strategy and tactics. As such, Azulas is always a safe pair of hands to have around in a crunch situation. Despite her flaws, of which there are many that she would identify, she has a great understanding of, and respect for, every person she has ever encountered, whether they be an ally or an enemy. Being prepared for anything that might arise is one of her strongest mantras and, as such, she is never caught with her pants around her ankles. Calm and considered, she will not act until she has the advantage and the greatest chance of success but, in the rare times where she has failed, she treats the experience as a learning curve, vowing never to make the same mistake twice.
Life experiences have altered her somewhat and at times she can come across as brash, outspoken and opinionated. And those are just some of the words she would use to describe herself. She acknowledges she could perhaps tone down her words from time to time, but she would never do so at the detriment of her more than plentiful positive attributes. With a great understanding of many fields, in part due to the eclectic experiences of her symbiont, Azulas is a well rounded officer, but where she really lacks any skill set is in the medical sciences or piloting. She is not the kind of officer you want to have in the middle of a medical emergency or at the helm of the ship during an ion storm.
|Personal History Before Starfleet||First Host: Toran (26 when joined, died at 78)
Second Host: Jennica (24 when joined, died at 54)
Third Host: Kalani (28 when joined, died at 47)
Fourth Host: Aissa (25 when joined, died at 58)
Current Host: Nilani (26 when joined)
The Azulas symbiont has lived for a total of 136 years in four previous hosts and is now with its fifth. Azulas was first joined in 2256 to a male called Toran. Toran was an incredible athlete and spent a lot of time running and taking part in different athletic sports. He won many interplanetary competitions until he was beaten in his prized event, the 5000 meters by a young upstart in 2275 at the age of 45. Toran spent the next thirty three years as a recluse, turning his hand to writing about the many events he had participated in. He died in 2308, a bestselling author and a father to two children prior to his joining.
The Azulas symbiont took these experiences with it when it was transferred to the Jennica host in 2308 when she was only 24. Jennica remains the youngest of the hosts to date. Jennica was a Science Officer in Starfleet at the time of joining, one of the first few Trills to have been accepted to the Academy and graduate. She spent thirty long years travelling the stars and developing a keen understanding of astrophysics and quantum chemistry until her death in 2338 at the age of 52. Jennica died after being struck by an energy surge in the main Engineering bay of the Excelsior class USS Potemkin. The energy surges caused an isoboramine imbalance that put the Azulas symbiont at risk. The symbiont was removed and kept stable as it was returned to Trill for re-joining, but this resulted in Jennica’s death. A selfless act that Azulas has never forgotten.
By the time Azulas was joined with its third host in late 2338, the symbiont had already lived for eighty two years. The symbiont was transferred to its second female host, and oldest until Nilani, a short woman named Kalani. Kalani provided the Azulas symbiont with a strong sense of morality, but at the same time, every host since Kalani has commented on how feisty and confident they have become after being joined with the symbiont. Kalani and Azulas were joined for only 19 years, the shortest of all Azulas hosts. Kalani was a trader, serving the trade routes near to Cardassian space when a deal with a Cardassian Gul went sour. Her ship was chased into the Badlands and once there, it was struck by an energy stream. The stream resulted in significant damage to the freighter and she limped out of the Badlands, only to run into a Federation Starship, the USS Manchester. The Freighter crew had suffered with injuries and Kalani had been struck down by an exploding console. Her injuries were quite severe and the Manchester returned her to Trill. Whilst on Trill, the Cardassian Gul she had had problems with turned up and held her hostage at her home, refusing to let her leave. Kalani was stabbed during an altercation and died instantly. The Azulas symbiont was close to death when it was eventually rescued and returned to the Caves of Mak’ala and the care of the Guardians.
After a few months of recuperation, the symbiont was given to its fourth host, Aissa. The second male host for the symbiont, Aissa was a quiet, tolerant man who enjoyed painting and the arts. He loved to dance and entertain people and in later life, he served as a composer of music and a choreographer. In his spare time, Aissa would frequently visit the famous Hoobishan Baths and could be found hiking along the Tenaran Ice Cliffs. Aissa Azulas died of heart complications in early 2386 at the age of just 58.
At this point, the Azulas symbiont was transferred to a successful Trill initiate called Nilani, who served Starfleet as an Engineer with the Advanced Starship Design Bureau.
|Starfleet Service History||Nilani Joranza was born on the Trill homeworld in 2355. Her father, Josias was a worker at the Symbiosis Commission when his wife, Mekela Prel gave birth to their only child. Mekela took a six month sabbatical from her position at the Trill Science Ministry in order to raise their child. Neither parent had ever been joined with one of the Trill symbionts but both wanted the very best for their child and put aside enough funds and resources to ensure she could do all the training she could possibly need to in order to become a Trill initiate when the time came. Josias used his experience at the Commission to get information and share that with Nilani from a young age. The girl was seen to be quite happy with the suggestion of joining, but deep down, she was quite apprehensive at the prospect of becoming the first in her family to be joined. When she was old enough to fully understand the process of joining and what it meant to Trills in particular, Nilani became even more nervous at the prospect. There were only three hundred symbionts available most years and over five thousand people would apply to become a host – what made her parents feel she was suitable? She was 15 and had yet to choose her career path.
Just over a year later, Nilani finally expressed her desire to pursue a career in Starfleet, something that neither of her parents had ever entertained as a choice for her, but neither opposed her choice. She applied for the entry exam and showed her first real signs of being suitable for joining – she passed the entrance exam with flying colours and was admitted to the Starfleet Academy complex on Beta Ursae Minor II. The young Trill, now 17, chose Advanced Theoretical Physics and Engineering as her majors. She chose to follow her keen interest in the design of warp engines and propulsion systems so opted for basic warp design, warp theory and warp equations as her minor subjects.
During her time at the Academy, Nilani showed a certain aptitude for warp design and was invited, as part of a three man Cadet group, to join in on the Diligent Project at the Utopia Planitia Fleetyards. The Cadets spent their entire third year with the project under the watchful gaze of Captain of Engineering, Captain Andrew Sheridan. Nilani gained valuable experience from the Engineers, working on the designs warp and propulsion systems. She saw engineers at their best as they worked on innovations made by both the Intrepid and Sovereign Class projects in order to improve the Diligent’s warp design. The warp coils were based off of a scaled-down Sovereign platform, whilst the team developed a warp core based on a dilithium swirl chamber, loosely based off of the Intrepid Class design. The design allowed for excellent power and speed and Nilani was directly involved in the design and improvement of the ships variable orientation pylons that the warp engines were mounted on. The design allowed for the nacelles, when not at warp, to be held close into the ship, minimizing the ship’s target profile from the front and rear. The notion behind the design was to give the nacelles some amount of protection by leaving them less exposed. The design allowed for the nacelles to be deployed just before going to warp in order to create a warp field that wouldn’t harm subspace, similar to the way an Intrepid Class vessel’s nacelles pivoted upwards prior to engaging warp speeds. It was a fascinating experience for the young cadets, and Nilani in particular. On a personal level, it was during her time at Utopia that her colleagues gave her the affectionate nickname of Lani, a name that has stuck with her ever since.
Returning to Starfleet Academy for her fourth and final year, Nilani subscribed to the Academy Extension Course #4077 in order to get a better understanding of the engineering developments of other major species in the Quadrants. Soon enough though, the time came for Nilani to depart the Academy. She took her final exams and, in the best of traditions, she finished as Valedictorian for her class.
Upon graduating with the highest of honors, Nilani returned to the family home for a short period of time to have a break and further discuss the families desire to see her put herself forward for joining. Her father cited the fact that she graduated as valedictorian with high honours (and had taken part in a project that most Cadets only got to dream about) as proof that she was worthy of joining and would make a crucial contribution to the symbionts life. Nilani was hesitant of the possible changes that could impact her should she be joined but was talked around by her family who celebrated as if she had successfully applied and been given a symbiont of her own. It was decided that Lani would take up her first posting and then, at the age of 25, she would apply to the Symbiosis Commission. With that in mind, and with an array of options open to her, Lani opted for a posting with the Advanced Starship Design Bureau at the Titan Shipyards.
Upon returning to the Sol System Lani joined the team, initially working on the construction of the Century class USS Constitution before being moved to the Atlantia Project that was still in its relative infancy. A light cruiser in the making, the Atlantia was utilizing many aspects of the failed Nimitz Project from the end of the previous decade. It was down to Nilani and the rest of the Propulsion team to provide the prototype for the class with functioning power systems and engines. It was decided to make use of the advanced internal nacelle design seen in the Sovereign and Intrepid, for higher sustained warp speeds for long time periods. The biggest issue was ensuring the ship had enough power to run all of the advanced systems that were required to fulfil her role as a rapid response vessel. For a few months, the team had difficulty with the warp core design and the intermix ratio, but once this was solved, a lot of smaller things started to fall into place. By 2380, the first ship departed the Shipyards for her first trials and shakedown mission. Nilani was temporarily assigned back to the USS Constitution construction project in order to assist with teething issues between the new warp core and the power distribution systems. Following the conclusion of her assignment with the Constitution, Nilani was granted a leave of absence in order to apply for joining with the Symbiosis Commission.
It would take only seven days to have a decision made; the decision makers believed Nilani to be a more than suitable host, having shown great skill and dedication to her career and having graduated with honors in three subject areas. Nilani Joranza was now officially a Trill Initiate. As an initiate, Lani underwent an intense series of exams and evaluations, both mental and physical, in order to determine her suitability for the joining process. It was determined that she was a calm, collected individual who had clearly thought of all the consequences of joining. After a few months of tests at the Commission, Lani was allowed to return to her posting at the Titan Shipyards where she would await a Field Docent to be assigned. Back in her element, Lieutenant Nilani Joranza was assigned to the Development Team at Utopia Planitia. Work began on the design phase of a new Starfighter to boost the various units dispersed around the Federation. Lani was to head up the team designing the Starfighters propulsion system at the time of her Field Docent, Tolen Dalar, arriving at Utopia. Dalar, a joined Trill himself, observed Nilani at work for a few days and then set about preparing the young woman for the process she was about to undertake. They spent several hours a night discussing different matters and why Nilani wanted to be joined. Eventually, when the time came for Dalar to leave, he was happy to give his recommendation that Nilani be joined. All being well, the woman would now be given a symbiont.
Getting back to work on her Project, Nilani didn’t hear anything for a few months and, when approaching her twenty sixth birthday towards the end of 2381, she began to fear that she wouldn’t be joined after all. With most Trills being joined in their early to mid twenties, she was now approaching the upper limit for likely joining. She had no reason to worry however, as she soon received the confirmation she was waiting for – a suitable symbiont had been found.
Following a trek on the Tenaran Ice Cliffs, a Trill man named Aissa Azulas was taken to the Symbiosis Commission suffering from heart pains. It was a worrying time for both Aissa (the host) and Azulas (the symbiont) as heart problems couldn’t be linked to either being and were rare. The doctors at the Commission did as much research as they could, but fearing the worst, they began the process of identifying a new host – picking Nilani from a strong group of candidates. Nilani was immediately sent for and requested another leave of absence. As work on the Atlantia project was at an advanced stage, her request was granted and once the USS Constitution had reported to Earth prior to its voyage to the Bajoran Sector, it picked her up and transported the young Trill home. The next time she would set foot at the Titan Fleetyards, she would, to all intents and purposes, be a different person.
Nilani spent two anxious days at the Commission, visiting her father as she waited for news of the symbiont. Sadly, the time came when the Aissa host began to reject the symbiont. The surgeons removed Azulas and returned the symbiont to the Caves of Mak’ala whilst they ascertained if the medical problems had affected the symbiont at all. It didn’t take long for the symbiont to be given the all clear and Nilani was prepared for surgery. With her mother and father watching on from outside, Nilani and Azulas were successfully joined. Lieutenant Nilani Joranza now ceased to exist and in her place, Lieutenant Nilani Azulas was born.
At first, Lani struggled like most newly joined Trill. Under the watchful eye and tutelage of the guardians she was taught how to control the memories and experiences she had inherited and was helped to come to terms with the changes in her personality. A once quiet, kind individual, Lani had become a feisty, confident young woman who was not afraid to stand up for herself and others. She also became more tolerant towards others and their opinions, which was especially helpful in her line of work. After a month of work with the guardians, Nilani was freed to go back to her duties and explore what it meant to be a joined Trill – but not without instructions to report in every two weeks for the first six months to ensure that everything had gone well.
With a full set of medical notes for the Medical staff at Titan, the Lieutenant returned to the Sol System, bartering transport aboard a Bolian Freighter. Put back to work with the team of the Atlantia Project, Lani arrived just in time to ship out with the shakedown cruise of the USS Atlantia. The ship went on a cruise from Earth to the Raeya Sector of the Beta Quadrant, testing all of the ships systems, including the propulsion systems she had worked on. During the voyage, Nilani was ordered to transfer to the Excalibur Class USS Al-Batani. The Al-Batani, under the command of Captain Gabriella Mendez, had been involved in a scientific survey of an unchartered system when she was pulled into an energy wave which rendered many of her systems inoperative. Nilani reported aboard as acting Chief Engineer and used her specialism with propulsion and warp systems to get the ship moving again. As the Al-Batani, travelling at a maximum of warp six, returned to the San Francisco Shipyards for repairs, the Lieutenant was given the chance to return to the Titan Shipyards or remain with the Al-Batani. Commander Colby Drayton (XO) sat down with Nilani and discussed the Trill's options with her. Nilani ultimately decided that she had done much of the design and creation aspect of Engineering and now wanted to put her knowledge to work in the field, serving aboard a starship for a longer period. Eventually, after much discussion, it was decided that Lani would remain with the Al-Batani as Chief Engineer at the rank of Lieutenant Commander.
In the midst of her tour of duty with the Al-Batani, disaster struck Starfleet, and her former home at the Titan Shipyards and Utopia Planitia. A group of rogue synthetic lifeforms launched an attack on the shipyard, destroying the relief armada being built to aide the Romulan evacuation ahead of the supernova that was predicted to destroy the homeworld. Nearly 100,000 souls lost their lives, and relations with the Romulans deteriorated rapidly. For Nilani, she felt many conflicting emotions. She was devestated for the loss of many of her colleagues, but she felt the relief of not being present. Had she not accepted her promotion on the Al-Batani, she would likely have been on the station at the time and would have lost her life.
From that point on, Starfleet (and the Federation) changed. Gone were the care free days of scientific exploration and diplomatic overtures. Instead, the Federation sealed its borders and limited contact with those beyond them, its mighty fleet aggressively protecting vast swathes of territory from threats both internal and external. In mid 2387, just months before the Romulan Supernova, the Al-Batani was headed for the Cardassian Border when news came in that the Sovereign class USS Nogura had come into difficulty near the Badlands and required assistance. The Al-Batani responded to the call but ran into the same difficulties, being dragged in to the plasma field by intense gravimetric distortions, even more intense than usual. The two ships took significant damage until Commander Drayton and Commander Azulas managed to modify the main deflector of the Al-Batani to emit a verteron pulse to disrupt the plasma fields hold long enough for the two ships to escape. In doing so, both ships suffered heavy damage and even heavier casualties.
When the wrecks of the two ships had been towed to Starbase 565 (by the Starships Venture and Horatio) a comprehensive list of casualties had been drawn up. The Nogura had lost nearly 100 crewmembers, including her Captain and first officer. The Al-Batani had lost just 36, but among them was the ships Captain also. For her part in the rescue, Nilani was awarded the Starfleet Citation for Conspicuous Gallantry. Newly promoted Captain Drayton had wanted to appoint the Commander as his new Executive Officer, but Starfleet Command felt they had seen enough to award Commander Azulas with command of the ship she had rescued, the Nogura. Despite a lack of command experience, Azulas had shown courage and dedication at the risk of great sacrifice to herself and that was the type of officer Starfleet wanted in their new breed of Commanding Officers. Accepting the posting, Commander Azulas utilised her engineering expertise to oversee the repair and refit of the Nogura over several months whilst travelling to different Starbases and Outposts to undergo training in the command field, including her very own Kobayashi Maru simulation at Deep Space 9. Whilst she failed, like everyone in history had (apart for one infamous exception), she demonstrated to a number of instructors that she had what it took to take command.
Over the next few years, Nilani and the crew of the Nogura would take part in some decisive conflicts, culminating in the ships participation in the events leading up to the conclusion of the Consortium plot to take over the Gamma Quadrant. Some time later, the Nogura was involved in a skirmish with a Borg cube that saw her dragged first, to the Delta Quadrant, and then to the Beta Quadrant and the Gavarian Corridor.
In late 2389, newly appointed Commodore Azulas was part of the team that worked on the initial design phase of the new M.A.R.S. system, trialing the device aboard the Nogura before being transferred to Deep Space 5 in the Northern Frontier as commander of the Copernicus Sector. Sadly, fate would play a cruel twist on the commodore as, just three months later and under a new commanding officer, the Nogura would go missing in an unexplored region of the Alpha Quadrant. Whilst several search vessels were dispatched to find the ship, Starfleet officially declared the vessel lost with all hands six months later. Devastated by the second tragedy to befall people she had worked with, Azulas took a short leave of absence before returning and throwing herself into her work. In 2393, Commodore Azulas was appointed to the rank of Rear Admiral and became the commander of the 6th Fleet. In this posting, the Admiral would garner the respect of many as she commanded her fleet with the same zeal that she had once commanded her own Starship, but the Federation, the galaxy even, was a very different place and by middle of 2398, Azulas longed for the opportunity to be back in the field, making a difference again. She stepped down from her role and surrendered her rank, returning to command of a starship again for the first time in nearly a decade.
Whilst the Solaria was not the Nogura, the Galaxy-class starship was an important ship, the last of her class to be constructed during the Dominion War and one of only six left in service. Solaria would perform admirably in her role until returning to DS5 upon the orders of Rear Admiral Gor in early 2399. There, a shocking surprise awaited; the USS Nogura, once believed lost, had been found by Ferengi Privateers and returned to Starfleet hands (at a heavy cost). In a state of disrepair, Nilani was offered the chance to take on her former command once again in an effort to lead the investigation into the fate of the ship's crew. She immediately accepted and transferred, beginning the process of restaffing the ship for her new mission.