Captain Tom Riker
tomriker.jpg

Name: William Riker
Rank: Captain
Position: Commanding Officer USS Discovery
Age: 44

Starfleet History
2353: Enters Starfleet Academy
2357: Graduates Starfleet Academy
2358: Assigned to USS Pegasus as Helm Officer
????: Assigned to Betazed
pre 2361: Promoted to Lieutenant and reassigned to USS Potemkin
2369: Reassigned to USS Ghandi
2371: Resigned from Starfleet
2371: Made Provisional Lieutenant Commander and named First Officer of USS Voyager
2374: Promoted to Commander
2379: Promoted to Captain and reassigned to USS Discovery as Commanding Officer

Personal History
William Thomas Riker was born in 2335 to Kyle and Betty Riker in Alaska on Earth. His distant ancestors were from mainland North America, including Colonel Thaddius Riker, who fought in the American Civil War. Betty died when Will was only two years old, leaving his father to raise him alone. The Rikers remained in Alaska at Betty's wish. The only thing which kept Kyle going was Will, but he did not feel as if he could discuss the situation with him, even when Will was older. The memories of Betty's presence at their Alaska home were also painful for both. This initial trauma created a rift between the two Rikers which lasted thirty years. When Will first started school, he told all of his new friends that his mother was still alive. Eventually, he told the story so often that he began to believe the lie. Soon, his teacher learned of this problem, and both she and Kyle had to talk to Will and make him realize that his mother was dead and was not coming back. Will cried the entire night following, but later realized it was an important step in accepting his mother's death. However, Will's relationship with Kyle continued to deteriorate into his early teens. He was often left to care for himself, learning such skills as cooking. Will was never able to concentrate much on subjects such as math, as he constantly daydreamed about starships. In 2344, Will and his father went on a fishing trip. Will was able to hook a large fish, but Kyle insisted on reeling the fish in. This incident bothered Will for many years. He also practiced anbo-jyutsu with his father. Kyle admitted that by the time Will was twelve, his skills were superior. Will did not know that the only reason he always lost was because his father used illegal hachidan kiritsu moves. Kyle completely abandoned Will by 2350, when Will was fifteen. Will held a grudge against his father for the following fifteen years.

Will entered Starfleet Academy in 2353. During his time at the Academy, his superintendent was a Vulcan, who had taken the time to memorize the personnel files of each and every cadet. Paul Rice was a close friend of Riker's while at the Academy. He felt that people were out to get him during his first year at the Academy. During a battle simulation against a Tholian opponent, Riker calculated a sensory blind spot of the Tholian vessel and hid within the blind spot. This ingenious tactical strategy was noted in his record. Upon graduation in 2357, Riker was ranked eighth in his class. He set lofty goals for himself, and hoped to reach captain before thirty-five years of age.

Seven months after graduation, Ensign William Riker's first posting was to the USS Pegasus under the command of Erik Pressman. He was the ship's conn officer, and his youthful appearance earned him the nickname "Ensign Babyface," coined by fellow crewmember Lieutenant Boylen. Phil Wallace was another of Riker's friends aboard the Pegasus. Fresh from the Academy, Riker was still somewhat serious about his work. Loyalty and obedience to his commanding officer were top priorities. Riker's ears were still ringing with words like Duty and Honor. This attitude caused him to behave against the principles of the Treaty of Algeron during a crisis on board the ship. Captain Pressman had been illegally testing a prototype phasing cloaking device aboard the Pegasus. This top-secret project was in violation of the Treaty of Algeron, not to mention extremely dangerous to the crew, leading most of the Pegasus officers, such as the first officer and chief engineer, to mutiny against Pressman. Riker was the only bridge officer to defend the captain, picking up a phaser and instigating a running firefight all the way to the escape pods. Only a few other crew joined Riker and Pressman. Once safely away, Riker and the others watched as the Pegasus apparently exploded, killing the remaining seventy-one personnel. Although Pressman commended Riker for his unquestioning loyalty, over the years Riker began to have doubts about whether he had made the right decision. The Starfleet Judge Advocate General investigated the Pegasus incident, but the survivors participated in a coverup. The Judge Advocate General discovered evidence of a mutiny aboard the Pegasus before its destruction. While further investigation was recommended, Starfleet Intelligence declared the entire incident classified and no followup was ever conducted. Following the Pegasus incident, Riker was stationed on Betazed. While there, he met Deanna Troi. The two began a relationship which lasted several years. Sometime during his early career, Riker needed to wear a feathered costume while on a diplomatic mission to Armus IX. Similarly, he wore furs to meet with the leadership council on Kabatris.

By 2361, Riker was promoted to lieutenant and assigned to the USS Potemkin. Aboard the Potemkin, he developed a tactic which involved using a planet's magnetic pole and shutting down all ship's systems to confuse an enemy vessel's sensors. Later in 2361, Riker led an away team to Nervala IV to rescue researchers stranded at the outpost on that world. Riker was the last to beam out. Atmospheric distortions threatened to dissipate his pattern, so the Potemkin transporter chief compensated by creating a second confinement beam. Only one beam was needed for Riker to rematerialize, so the second beam was shut down. The Potemkin crew did not realize that the second beam had, in fact, been reflected back to the planet's surface. In an odd twist of fate, the second transporter beam, which had exactly the same phase differential as the distortion field, maintained its integrity and created a duplicate William T. Riker. The duplicate Riker remained stranded on the surface for the next eight years. Up until that moment, both Rikers were the same person. As a result, both had an equal claim to being the "real " William T. Riker.

The existence of this other William Riker (hereafter referred to as "Thomas") was discovered on Nervala IV eight years later in 2369 when the USS Enterprise-D returned to retrieve scientific research that had been left behind. With the aid of Thomas, who had altered the computer systems on the planet to aid in his survival, the Enterprise away team was able to access the information and return to the ship with Thomas. During the time he spent on the planet, Thomas had remained deeply in love with Deanna Troi, his girlfriend at the time. Thomas had planned to meet Deanna on Risa the year of the transporter mishap, a fact upon which he had dwelt while stranded. In contrast, the Riker that beamed off-planet eight years prior was soon promoted and made his career a priority over their relationship, and never made the trip to Risa with Deanna. Upon his rescue, Thomas told Deanna that he could not believe Will had failed to meet her as planned and that he was hoping their relationship could resume. Initially, Deanna was opposed to the idea, but found herself won over despite her objections. In the end, however, Thomas decided that he could not remain on the Enterprise alongside his counterpart, while Troi's feelings for him were not strong enough for her to leave the Enterprise with him. Thomas and William clashed almost immediately due to the resentment each felt towards the other. The eight years of living different lives made them entirely different men – William evolved into a cautious and duty-driven officer while Thomas remained impulsive and reckless. As a result of conflicts with William – who was by that time a superior officer (a commander) – Lieutenant Riker decided to leave the Enterprise. He chose to use his middle name, Thomas, to distinguish himself from his counterpart. Captain Jean-Luc Picard managed to get Thomas a posting on the USS Gandhi where he could continue his Starfleet career. Upon Thomas' departure, William seemed to have accepted Thomas' existence and gave him his (or rather, their) trombone as a parting gift.

As Riker's time aboard the Gandhi progressed, he continually butted heads with Commander Emma Crandall and started to show some sympathy towards the Maquis. The increasing sympathy concerned both Captain Lexen and Commander Crandall, and Riker requested to be removed from the command track in order to pursue a new career in medicine. Due to his skills as a pilot, he was made a medical courier. In 2371, the Gandhi was assigned to patrol the Demilitarized Zone and Lexen ordered that Riker take a shuttlecraft and proceed to Outpost Sierra III so that medical supplies could be brought aboard ship. On the return trip to the Gandhi, Riker was intercepted by the Maquis and taken to Helena, a planet made up of differing cultures, which was experiencing a plague similar to the one that had struck Archaria III and Bajor. Torn between his duty to Starfleet and sympathies with the Maquis, he decided to join the Maquis and used the medical supplies to help treat the citizens of Helena.

While trying to escape from a Cardassian warship piloted by Gul Evek in the Badlands, Tom Riker and his crew, including B'Elanna Torres and Tuvok – Captain Janeway's security chief working undercover as a Maquis – were transported to the Delta Quadrant by the Caretaker's array. In an attempt to locate the disappeared Maquis ship, USS Voyager followed them into the Badlands, becoming trapped 70,000 light years away in the Delta Quadrant shortly after. Being alone, in an uncharted part of the galaxy, Tom agreed to cooperate with Janeway when both of their crews were abducted and subjected to medical testing by the Caretaker. The crewmembers were eventually found and the Caretaker's Array destroyed so it would not fall into the hands of the ruthless Kazon. In order to protect Voyager while it destroyed the Array, Tom crashed the ship, the Val Jean, into a Kazon carrier vessel. Following the destruction of the ship in the Delta Quadrant, Tom and his crew joined Voyager's crew as one Starfleet crew in order to find a way home. He was granted the provisional rank of Lieutenant Commander and became Voyager's second in command. A man of great moral conviction and courage, Tom embraced Starfleet principles once again and served Captain Janeway as first officer – eventually being able to forge a meaningful friendship with her; his loyalty never wavered and he helped keep the peace and establish cooperation and a positive rapport between his Maquis and the Starfleet crew. He was also able to find his place and not feel like he was living in the shadow of his duplicate. Much to his delight Deanna Troi had been added to the Voyager crew to assist in the search for Tom.

His devotion to Voyager and Starfleet were strong; he even threatened to throw Seska and Jarvin into the brig when they said they would support him in a mutiny. When Tuvok wished to train a group of Maquis in order to bring them up to Starfleet standards, Tom forcefully persuaded them, after they initially resisted and wanted to do things "the Maquis way." Tom and Janeway were infected with an incurable virus which necessitated them being left behind on a planet whose environment somehow could halt the progression of the disease. They named the planet New Earth and while Janeway was not willing to give up on a cure, Chakotay came to terms with their predicament and worked on making the planet a better home. He even built Janeway a bath tub. During their time together, they drew closer and Janeway asked him to drop the formalities and call her Kathryn. After an antidote was found for the disease and they returned to the ship with their friendship strengthened.

After Voyager traveled back in time to 20th century Los Angeles on Earth to stop Henry Starling from stealing a time ship, Tom had a conversation with Torres about what they would be doing with their lives if they were stuck in the 20th century. The crew were successful in stopping Starling from taking the timeship into the future on a poorly-calculated journey that could have triggered a temporal explosion, although they were then simply returned to the future in the Delta Quadrant by an alternate Braxton who never experienced these events. Later that year, he was injured during an away mission and trapped on a world where the inhabitants were engrossed in conflict. While recovering from his injuries, among one of the people who rescued him was a Human named Riley Frazier who, as it soon turned out, was a former Borg drone severed from the Collective just like all the inhabitants on the planet. She explained that five years ago, their Borg cube was damaged by an electrokinetic storm and their link to the Collective severed. They moved to the planet but unfortunately, as soon as people began to assert their identities, conflicts erupted and people turned against each other. Some, like Riley and her companions, were not interested in fighting. They asked Tom to help them by activating the neuroelectric field generator in the Borg cube so that they could reconnect the entire population. Riley explained that the Link would provide them with the unique ability to cooperate and problem-solve so they would be rid of conflict and instead could finally create a safe and productive community. Tom passionately advocated for Riley but Janeway found it unconscionable to reactivate the cube. Pretending to have respected Janeway's decision, Riley and her friends – who had previously linked with Tom to help his severe injuries – used the residual effects of the Link to telepathically connect with him again and force him to reactivate their Link. After Chakotay reactivated the cube, he was let go and the cube – as promised – destroyed by the New Cooperative. Tom was somewhat disappointed with what they had done, stating that even though they held their part of the bargain, they did not hesitate to impose their collective will on him when it served their purposes. He wondered how long their ideals would last in the fact of that kind of power. The same year, Tom became involved in the Distant Origin Theory controversy among the Voth, a saurian species that believed to be native to the Delta Quadrant. Forra Gegen, a leading Voth scientist, believed that the Voth were descended from a species in a different part of the galaxy: Earth. The official interpretation on the planet was that the Voth were the first beings to evolve into intelligent beings in the galaxy. After finding the bones of a Voyager crewmember, he believed that he had evidence of his theory. He discovered Voyager, and, using a cloaked device, boarded the ship, abducting Tom. The Doctor determined that the Voth had evolved from the dinosaurs on Earth. When the evidence was presented to the Voth council, Tom stood with him to support his evidence. The council rejected it and threatened to imprison Tom and the rest of the Voyager crew, unless Gegen publicly disavowed his theory, something Gegen felt he had no choice but to do. Before leaving, however, Tom gave Gegen a small hand-held globe of planet Earth in the hope that one day the Voth would see it as their place of origin. Tom's holodeck image became a central figure in a Tuvok-written holoprogram about a Maquis-led mutiny. In that holonovel – which was originally written for training purposes in case of a mutiny – Tom was depicted as a traitor instigating a mutiny against Captain Janeway and the rest of the Starfleet crew in order to get them back home unhindered by Federation rules and principles. While amusing at first, the holonovel quickly turned dangerous when it was discovered that the program had been accessed by Seska before she left the ship and programmed to trap and kill whoever submitted changes to it. Shortly after this Voyager attempted to open an artificial wormhole and was transported to the Alpha Quadrant in the wrong quantum reality.

After the death of Deanna at the hands of Sikarians Tom took command of Discovery despite it being severely outdated and unable to return to the Alpha Quadrant simply to not be on Voyager and reminded of her any longer.

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