STAR FLEET PERSONNEL COMMAND FILE
|Position:||Acting Chief Science Officer|
|Assignment:||USS Yeager, FSC-28018|
|Rank:||Lieutenant Junior Grade|
|Played By:||Alexa Rydell|
|Height:||180 cm (5 ft. 11 in.)||Weight:||61.2 kg (135 lb.)|
|Eye Color:||Black (wears lenses to make them appear dark brown)|
|Hairstyle:||Long, usually pinned and twisted up|
|Physique:||Tall and slender|
|Affiliation:||United Federation of Planets|
|Status of Parents:||Alive, continuing their occupations on Betazed|
|Siblings:||Karai (35, Star Fleet diplomat) Derin, (27, civilian doctor on Betazed)|
Personal HistoryThere was no reason Laila Besek shouldn’t have had telepathic abilities.
True, she’d been born premature, but plenty of young Betazed children are born premature and develop telepathy just fine. Both her parents were strong telepaths. Her older sister and younger brother both developed their powers early, and took to the study of them with great zeal.
It was never that easy for Laila, though. Even as all her classmates began to develop telepathy, Laila’s skills hovered at low-level empathy. Even extensive private tutoring was only able to get her to the level where she could communicate telepathically at a low level. Her friends drifted away from her. Some of her teachers accused her of not trying hard enough, which wasn’t really true. She did get to a point where she gave up trying, but not before several years of banging her head against her lessons, searching for just a hint of a thought.
Laila has empathic abilities on par with a mostly untrained Betazoid hybrid. She can communicate with other Betazoids telepathically, but it’s very difficult for her, and she doesn’t like to do it. She never developed full telepathy. She does have an adept sense of body language and facial expressions of Betazoids and Humans.
Her parents and siblings all did their best to make her feel supported and loved, but conflict was inevitable. Telepathy is so central to Betazed culture and relationships, and Laila grew increasingly bothered by how much other people knew about her. Additionally, she was jealous of the seemingly deeper relationships her siblings developed with each other, and their parents.
Being a teenager is hard at the best of times, and being a non-telepathic teenager surrounded by telepaths is even worse. While her family and her peers grew closer together, forming strong social bonds, she began to feel more and more alone. Laila was socially isolated, and depressed. She went to great lengths to protect any shred of privacy she could have, something unusual in Betazed society. She also avoided social engagements, knowing she’d just make everyone there feel awkward.
At age fifteen, Laila found out about a boarding school on Earth that accepted off-world students, and demanded to go. Though saddened, her parents agreed it was the best course of action. They hadn’t wanted to send their daughter away, but realized they probably should have done so sooner. Moving to Earth was one of the best things to happen to Laila. For the first time, Laila felt normal. It was at the boarding school where she truly discovered her love for science, and her interest in space. She also made good friends, such as Reina, who she kept in contact with. She only returned to Betazed twice after leaving, once for her sister’s wedding and once for her brother’s medical school graduation.
Following graduation, Laila remained on Earth to study Astrophysics at a prestigious science academy. Science and academics offered her the understanding she felt she’d been missing her entire life. She was about a year away from finishing her doctoral degree when Star Fleet came knocking. The Fleet needed officers, and with recent conflicts medical and science officers weren’t enrolling in the necessary numbers. Star Fleet was going around to graduate programs, offering students a chance to complete their degree at the Academy, along with officer training. There were a number of benefits to the program, and Laila enrolled, knowing that Starfleet was probably the best place to get to study Astrophysics first hand.
Laila enjoyed her time at the Academy, though being around other telepathic species again made her a little nervous. It was at the Academy that she started making distinct efforts to look and act Human, growing tired of having to answer questions and represent a culture that she didn’t identify with. Though she was friendly with other cadets, and made time to have fun, Laila focused mostly on her studies. She graduated in the top 15% of her class, and was assigned to Starbase Delta.
On Delta, Laila’s job was to scan through passive and active sensor data ships returning from missions brought back to see if there was anything the ship’s computer or Science Department had missed. It was boring work, but it did expand her knowledge of astrophysics, and allowed her to familiarize herself with the fleet. Her strong work ethic got her assigned as a lab supervisor, a position which gave her great pride.
Still, Laila longed for the opportunity to do field work on a starship. She applied for several positions on scouts, and was approved for a transfer to the USS Yeager.
Personality ProfileAcademy Major(s): Astrophysics
Academy Minor(s): Warp Mechanics
Hobbies and Pastimes: reading, people-watching, making simulations of supernovae and other phenomena, swimming
Short-Term Goals: To be Chief Science Officer of a starship
Long-Term Goals: To make a breakthrough in studying astrophysical phenomena
Personality: Laila is friendly and personable, though she doesn’t overdo it. She does her best to interpret people’s body language and make them feel at ease. Her love of astrophysics is passionate, and she takes great joy immersing herself in science even in her off-hours. However, Laila is also very concerned about what people think about her, and has an immense need for approval from both her commanders and subordinates
Sense of Humor: Finds most jokes funny, but rarely makes any herself
Phobias: Very paranoid about what people say about her behind her back
Likes: space, planetary phenomena, classic Terran literature, good conversation
Dislikes: people upset or in pain, disrespect for science or the scientific method, gossip, ostentatious telepaths, feeling left-out
Pet Peeves or Gripes: dislikes people who judge others or make assumptions, people who don’t take proper care of their workspace
Bad Habits or Vices: mildly obsessed with her appearance. She’s constantly checking her hair or adjusting her uniform
Achievements: a number of academic awards
Disappointments: Not having the strong telepathic abilities of her siblings
Illnesses: suffered a number of high fevers as a child
Strengths: intelligent, has a great love for science and engineering, kind, intuitive
Weaknesses: insecure, defensive, can be overly blunt, not strong with tactical strategy
Fears: failure, being in over her head, being completely alone
Prejudices: feels uncomfortable around skilled telepaths, especially other Betazoids
Off Duty Clothing Tastes: Custom dresses and skirts, keeps up with the latest styles
Distinguishing Features: Though a full-blooded Betazoid, Laila makes a distinct effort to appear Human
Friends: Reina Verdugo, a friend from boarding school who she’s kept in touch with over the years. Reina is a civilian microbiologist.
Personal Paradigm ShiftsMost Painful Experience: Age eight. Laila was sitting with her friends having lunch, when she realized her friends were having a telepathic conversation, and she could barely understand any of it, except “poor Laila”. She ran off in tears. After that, her friends started hanging out with her less and less.
Best Time: The boarding school on Earth. It was the first time since she was a little kid that she really had good friends.
Most Crucial Experience: Moving to Earth, and beginning to study space
Role Model: Admiral Katherine Kation, director of the SFSI Department of Space Science. Laila admires her work and career achievements.
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- Please note that familial and historical references to age may be current only to time of retirement.