Captain Ranma Saotome is currently the commanding officer of the U.S.S. Benjamin Sisko. He is also the officer in charge of the special operations task force attached to it, code-named 'NEO.'
Captain Saotome has served much of his adult life in space on many starships. One of those ships having been at the battle of Wolf 3-5-9, where his ship was destroyed and his Captain killed; the young Lieutenant making it off the ship just in time.
Ranma's last tour of duty before the Sisko was the USS Loami (NCC 71144), where he served as her Executive Officer. His future wife, Commander Akane Saotome, also served aboard the Loami as her Chief of Security.
Ranma's dream of his own command seeming came true when he was promoted to Captain and assigned command of the then Gosnell class USS Benjamin Sisko.
His dream quickly became a nightmare when he found himself surrounded by many of his nemesis, most in positions that Ranma felt they were grossly unqualified for.
He was also assigned Commander Shampoo as his Executive Officer, someone he felt had been stalking him for years. This, of course, angered then Commander Tendo, who had also been assigned to the Sisko as her Chief Medical Officer.
As for that, Ranma again felt slighted as while he reluctantly acknowledged that he wasn't displeased to be again serving with Akane, he was upset at the position she was given. The CMO position was not one to be taken lightly, and outside of her field medic training that all security personnel receives, Akane had no medical experience.
Piling onto Ranma's troubles, his helmsman, then Ensign Ryoga Hibiki, was known for getting lost. His tactical officer, Lt. Mousse suffered from both nearsightedness and farsightedness. In fact, his ability to actually be in Starfleet was in question, however, it appears he was given special accommodations from Vice Admiral Happosai.
As well, Ranma's Chief Engineer, Lt. Commander Usagi Tsukino, was not an engineer at all and was bumped several ranks to take the position; despite her dismal safety record as a security officer. The counselor assigned to the ship, then Lt. Commander Rei Hino, had no training in counseling as she was also a security officer. The Sisko's Chief of Operations, Lt. Commander Minako Aino was the only one, as Ranma put it in a log 'competent' in their position, but even she had never served on a spaceship before.
The first day in command started out poorly for Ranma as the Sisko ended up damaging another ship and blowing a hole in the roof of the spacedock.
Logs show that in the beginning, Ensign Hibiki apparently backed the ship from its parked position, rather than pushing it forward, causing the initial collision. From that point on, he made several other mistakes while guiding the Sisko towards the exit that caused the ship to turn completely away from the doors and towards the 'roof' of the dock.
Logs further indicate that Saotome had Lt. Commander Aino seize the helm and ordered the ship to a stop, but the forward momentum of the ship would have caused a collision with the dock. In an attempt to reduce damage to the ship, Saotome ordered the shields raised, however, Lt. Mousse inadvertently fired a torpedo from the ship’s forward launcher, which blew a hole in the dock, allowing the Sisko to coast through.
While threatened with it, Saotome was never actually forced to pay for repairs to the dock, however, he, Lt. Mousse, and Ensign Hibiki all received write-ups and loss of shore leave as punishment.
Ranma's first mission with his 'lackluster crew' was to deal with an incursion of annoying ships near the Finden system. It was to be the first test of his new crew, and none of it worked out well for Ranma.
Due to a misunderstanding between Saotome and his civilian bartender, the Captain ended up having cold water thrown on him. Normally this would simply end up in disciplinary measures for the bartender in question, however, Saotome (and several other of his crew) were inflicted with the Jusenkyo Curse that caused them to change when wet.
Saotome's curse caused him to convert into a female form of himself. This stirred the suspicions of his third officer, Lt. Commander Aino, who attempted to crudely draw a blood sample from him in order to find out if he was a Founder.
The initial attempt failed, however, a second attempt involving smashing a broken bottle over Saotome's head was successful in drawing blood and halting any further speculation. Saotome let Aino off with a warning. However, the commotion set off a small-scale riot that finally ended when Ensign Hibiki managed to blow up a glass table sending most of the 10-Forward patrons to sickbay with glass wounds.
After successfully defending the Finden System, the Sisko began to be pursued by a Kuno cube. Worried about the tactical advantage the Kunos would have, Saotome decided to buy some time and retreat. However, a distress call from California 5, where Akane's father, Soun Tendo was an ambassador directed them there. The colony was under assault by a group calling themselves 'The Space Pirates.'
The attack was interrupted, but not before the Pirates managed to kidnap Soun and the visiting Admiral Genma Saotome. The Kunos soon arrived and also assaulted both the Sisko and the pirate ship. In the ensuing chaos, the Pirates managed to beam Shampoo, Rei, and Akane off the Sisko in an attempt to extract information from them regarding latinum deposits.
Both the Kunos and the Pirates were eventually beaten, however, and all shipmates returned. (Note - need to add the 'see also' for the pirate ship torture here!)
Saotome's crew actually seemed to start working together as they ended up coming to the aid of the derelict USS Minneapolis. This ended up becoming a major hassle for the crew as it was a Section 31 ship staffed by Section 31 agent Mamoru Chiba, who had faked his own death several years earlier.
One of the hardest things Saotome has admitted he has had to do was preside over the funeral of Mousse. Not just because of the obvious hardship in losing a crew member, but because the actions leading to his death are classified Black Five, Starfleet's highest level of classification, and cannot be spoken about.
In a private ceremony over subspace, Ranma Saotome and Akane Tendo married on Stardate 60123. Their marriage at first was kept private, except for a few people in the loop, but was eventually allowed to become public knowledge.
In the Zima Prime System, Saotome again went head to head with the Kunos who appeared to be demanding the exchange of him for sparing Earth of their new superweapon.
In the end, it turned out that they had no such weapon, and Saotome and their crew were easily able to defeat them. Saotome, as well as the entire ship’s crew, was awarded the Starfleet Silver Cross for Distinguished Service.
At the request of Admiral Scott Larson, Saotome assumed command of the NEO Special Operations unit.
Saotome's first mission with his new SpecOps team nearly ended in failure.
His requirement to rescue hostages, who happened to be his sisters-in-law, caused serious emotional conflicts and allowed a Vulcan terrorist, Vor'Gal, to nearly pull off his plans to launch a massive attack against Vulcan. Fortunately, the plan was stopped and Vor'Gal was killed, but not before an errant torpedo from the Sisko impacted the surface of Vulcan, resulting in six fatalities.
As a result, Saotome was stripped of his rank and demoted to Commander, and sent to face court-martial.
Serving as First Officer aboard the Sisko under Captain Karyn Walker now, Saotome accompanied the NEO assault on a chemical weapons plant on Chidori III in a failed attempt to rescue what were believed to be Federation hostages.
Due to an incoming Klingon assault, however, all parties involved agreed to abandon the plant together.
Saotome, due to unfortunate circumstances, returned to command of the Sisko on Stardate 60922.9. After a warp core malfunction (that later turned out to be a deliberate act of sabotage) that pushed them into transwarp, the Sisko crashed onto a planet they learned was named Valarie (NZ-12G IV). The crash killed Captain Karyn Walker and several other members of the Sisko's crew.
On Stardate 60997, Saotome ordered his crew to abandon ship to the U.S.S. Crossroads and destroyed the USS Benjamin L. Sisko so that it would not fall into the hands of the encroaching militaries of Valarie's two governments. (See Valerie Incident for more details.)
Admiral Larson, on Stardate 61001, issued a field promotion to Saotome, restoring his official rank as Captain.