Commander Lorato Carter
A tall black woman, dashing and roguish. She has a habit of wearing a cloak or cape.
Lorato Carter was born to Nothandu and S’bu Carter on the Mafadi colony near the Bajoran Badlands in 2335. She had a peaceful childhood, but always longed for adventure. Her family was well-off – her father was the colonial governor, her mother head of operations at the colony’s lunar dilithium mine – so when she decided to leave home she put her own personal wealth into the one thing that could get her that adventure – a ship. She named it the SS Delight, and she started making runs on the Bajor-Ferenginar route. Her work was quite profitable, and soon she had a small group of merchantmen.
In late 2361, the Delight was attacked by an Orion raiding ship. The Orion ship was far smaller than Delight, but better armed, and the only way Lorato could find to prevent the capture of her ship and crew was to ram the Orions. While Delight managed to limp to port at Hydra, the ship would not fly again, and Lorato saw a new business opportunity. She sold the rest of her merchant fleet, reinvesting the revenue from that and her work over the previous years into a new venture. She bought three armed vessels – the Louverture, the Spartacus, and the Washington – and got into the business of convoy escort. This turned out to be more lucrative than shipping – convoys with escort were rarely attacked, so most runs only cost her fuel – but she fought enough to become a fair hand at space combat.
In 2366, with the signing of the treaty that ended the Federation-Cardassian War, Mafadi was moved to the Cardassian side of the border. At first, while Lorato did what she could to help the colonists – smuggling supplies across the border in daring maneuvers – she had no interest in fighting the occupation. Then, in 2369, a government-backed Cardassian militia trying to push the humans out of the Mafadi system bombed the clinic where Lorato’s sister was working. Lorato got word of Mthunzi’s death, and the next day addressed her crew. She was taking her ships to war. Most of her crew stayed on; those who didn’t were easily replaced with personnel provided by the local Maquis cell.
For two years, Lorato fought and smuggled, a pirate and a revolutionary. She lost Louverture to a Cardassian cruiser in 2370 and moved her flag to Washington, stepping up piracy against Federation shipping to get supplies and trade goods for the Maquis and the colonies they protected. It was with her pirate actions that she attracted the attention of Starfleet.