Karissa was born the youngest of 3 siblings in 2357. Her elder brother, Daniel is 3 years older and her eldest brother, Peter, is 4 years older. Being the only girl with 2 older brothers, didn’t bode well for her as she grew up, but not in an entirely negative way.
Peter and Daniel were extremely protective over their little sister, even from an early age, much the happiness of their Father, James Gardner. As such, she did have a pretty good childhood, lots of friends and two big brothers who loved their sister very much.
As a school child, Karissa was A* student. Daniel nicknamed her ‘book worm’ as she always her head a Pads of school work. She maintained this even through to her Secondary Education schooling.
Throughout her childhood and teenage years, the Gardners shared regular family holidays. It was on these holiday’s that the Gardner children developed their passion for Scuba Diving.
In 2374, Karissa applied and was successful in her application to join Starfleet Academy. From the very start she became the model student, engaging in various extra circulars and clubs, which included Martial Arts Club, Languages and Meditation.
The lessons she learned from the languages club included a history of some of the more ancient languages, Latin, Iconian, Ancient Bajoran, Vulcan, Ancient Greek etc. The studies from the club complimented her regular studies, as she learned more about syntax and phonology than she would’ve done by just learning in the classroom.
At the start of her second year, something happened that caused a huge stir at the Academy. A Cardassian joined Starfleet Academy. The majority of the people shunned him, but she developed a close friendship with the Cardassian, Orrin Durol.
In her other studies, security officer training, starship weapons training, team leading and advanced hand to hand combat, she excelled. By the end of her third year, she had achieved mastery in Wing Chun, a form of Kung Fu that brothers had recommended to her.
In in 2377, her final year at the academy, she was selected for a Cadet Cruise. The starship she was assigned to, was ordered to patrol the known regions of the Beta Quadrant. It was there, whilst Karissa was on duty at the tactical station, that they made first contact with the Drellniva, a civilization who had only just achieved warp drive in the last decade.
There was a slight hostile engagement, but there weapons were primitive and it was only purely out of fear until the Commanding Officer managed to convince them, with Karissa’s help in alternating the parameters of the Universal Translator.
The Drellniva requested that Starfleet leave them alone and not to enter their system without good cause. The Federation agreed to their requests and the Drellniva left. Karissa was given a commendation by the Commanding Officer and she graduated in the top 30% of her class.
After graduation she was assigned to the USS Galaxy, as a tactical officer, spending 2 years there, as the late night, Gamma Shift, tactical officer. This long year of her journey in Starfleet was quite boring, only having to fire warning shots briefly, by which point the senior staff would be soon there way to the Bridge.
Her 2nd year, she was assigned to the USS Dauntless, as Relief Tactical and Security Officer, one below the Assistant Chief. She was given some responsibility. As the Dauntless was a larger ship, and meant she was in charge several team’s of security personnel. She was responsible for making sure the teams weapon lockers were tidy and ensuring their weapons have been regularly serviced, deployment strategies in case of the ship being boarded and ensuring this wasn’t overlapping any of the other teams deployment and if it did, could this be worked in to the plan.
The most exciting part of her job was ensuring that her team was trained regularly and kept in tip top condition. The best part of this job was when either the chief or assistant chief joined in the training and observed her and after the training they congratulated her on a job well done.
Later that year, the Dauntless was boarded in confrontation with the Borg and due to Karissa’s leadership, especially in rallying the other team leaders and enabling them to lead led to another commendation in Karissa’s service record and her promotion to Lieutenant Junior Grade.
With the death of the Assistant Chief, she was also given a promotion to Assistant Chief Security and Tactical Officer. This meant she was no longer incharge of any team’s, but she was in charge of the team leaders and ensuring that all the training they were meant to be completing was completing on a weekly basis and ensuring that a monthly report was delivered to the Chief on the readiness of the teams and performance reports on the team leaders.
In 2383, she was then reassigned to the Ajax, as the Chief Security and Tactical Officer. Being a Senior Officer was exhillirating. Although the workload was constant she relished the challenge of being able to confront those challenges. She pushed herself hard, excelling in this position, so much so that she was enjoying herself.
At the beginning of 2387, the worst happened. Her parents had been transferred to Starbase Assignments. An accident on non-maintained equipment, vented atmosphere into the section his parents were in. The accident killed 60 Starfleet Officers. Karissa took a LOA from her time on the Dauntless, returned to Earth to grieve with her Peter.
After the funeral, Peter and Karissa knew it was time to return to duty, after spending 4 days with their family, Peter was given orders to take Command of the USS Excelsior.
A few days after Peter’s return to duty, she was given a new assignment. She was reassigned to the USS Triton as the Chief Security and Tactical Officer. Upon arrival she was tasked with raising her departments morale, after a chaotic few months. She completed the task that was set before her, raising the morale and building a good rapport with the team. Her first mission on the Triton involved a pre-warp civilization and the Cardassian’s attempting to take advantage of them.
She was extremely annoyed, when she was again transferred.
After a few months aboard the Triton, Karissa was given new orders to report to the Venture, still within Task Force 47 to become the Assistant Chief Security and Tactical Officer. She was a little confused as to why she as being demoted one position, but quickly understood why, when she became aware of the Venture’s mission. It was heading to Cardassia.
It was clear to her from that point on, Starfleet needed experienced Officers at all levels of the Venture’s hierarchy for such a complex mission. After that, Karissa started enjoying being the Assistant Chief again, working hard to develop the Security Teams and give them the benefit’s of experience. It wasn’t long though, before the Venture was headed into Cardassian Space…
After the long mission in Cardassian space, which resulted in the death of the Chief, Karissa requested a short LOA. However, a week later her request was denied and she was reassigned to Task Force 72, to serve as the Executive Officer of Deep Space 12.
Deep Space 12
Deep Space 12 was an interesting assignment. Everything was totally different to what she was used to. She had been to Deep Space 9, but only for brief periods of time. Her first assignment as Executive Officer was interesting, however didn’t end well. A disease was spreading across the station. She contracted and fell ill. Karissa the other individuals affected were stablized but returned to Earth to Starfleet Medical for further treatment to cure her and the others.
Karissa wasn’t particularly happy to be spending New Years Eve and Day in Starfleet Medical, but she did. She saw in the New Year ill and very unhappy. After several long days, the Doctors finally announced that they had found the right chemicals to counteract the virus. Several hours later, she was back on her feet. She had to spend a few days under observation, but after that she was cleared to return to active duty. She was disappointed to discover that her old job as XO on DS12 had been taken, but instead was being offered a return to starship duty, on the USS Sovereign as the Chief Security and Tactical Officer but she had also been put forward for the Second Officer position, which was something the Commanding Officer had to approve her for.
Karissa was given the Second Officer’s position when she boarded the Sovereign. She developed not only a good working relationship with the ships First Officer but also developed a friendship with the Romulan woman. Her time aboard the Sovereign was generally quiet, apart from a few minor skirmishes, her security department didn’t see much action, except during the number of diplomatic engagements the Sovereign played host to.
After 18 months, she was took an extended leave of absence back on Earth, using a small portion of her leave that she had built up.
Karissa is a female humanoid hybrid in Starfleet. She spent the beginning of her career as a covert operative, which has been completed removed from her standing record. Post that, she has worked as a Security and Tactical Officer for the majority of her Starfleet career.