Hideki Okada (Born Nagasaki, Japan, Earth) was an engineer and starship captain in the Compact Navy. he often described his own appearance as “padded and doughy,” an acknowledgment he had a less-than-active lifestyle. He had the rare ability to look into a wormhole as a ship transited it. While the sight of interdimensional shifts caused nausea in most people, Okada could stare at the color shifts and structures and see them as math problems.
In 429 IE, he commanded the maiden voyage of the Alcubierre, the first warp-capable ship, in a two-week trip over two light-years from Jupiter to Trantor. After the flight, being told the Warp Project would be defunded, Okada left the service and moved to Thule. There, he had a brief affair with a well-rejuvenated centenarian.
Two Cybercommand agents disrupted his new life, taking him into custody and questioning him about his girlfriend’s employment with a company attempting to develop warp drive independently. Okada was kept nude in a white room over a period of two days.
The Cybercommand custody led to his return to active duty to assume command of the Challenger, a retired Zephyr-class ship that had been retrofitted for warp drive. There, he reunited with Commander Linda Havak and Peter Lancaster, the man who cracked warp dynamics, designed the Alcubierre, and served as that ship’s engineer.
Okada expressed displeasure with Cybercommand’s handling of the Challenger‘s refit and demanded Navy warp engineers. Admiral Burke agreed but allowed Agent Weiss to be assigned as a security officer. During the warp journey to Earth, he found himself confronted while on the toilet by Weiss about Lancaster’s possible issues with loyalty. Okada threatened to put her in the brig for interfering with the mission, but was interrupted by the ship suffering a catastrophic warp failure. He ordered Lancaster to bring the projection drive back online and Havak to find Sol. They then jumped to Earth via wormhole.
Stopping first at Luna, Okada received Rear Admiral Quentin Austin, who had just assumed command of the Warp Project. Okada expressed doubts about Austin as his reputation had taken a hit after the failure to retake Amargosa. They traveled to Naval Headquarters in Antarctica to meet with Fleet Admiral Tran and his assistant, Major Liu. Tran declared the Challenger ready for its first covert mission over Okada and Lancaster’s objections. The ship then put in at Nereid for repairs and supplies. There, O-4 Weiss brought fission-triggered fusion warheads aboard to be used on a yet-unspecified Gelt colony as the nuclear strike on Nagasaki during the World War Era. Sealed orders revealed the warheads were intended for use against a Gelt colony on a planet known as Garrond 75e. He and Weiss briefed the senior officers. Predictably, Lancaster protested the most.
During the mission, the ship hit another brown dwarf. As Lancaster effected repairs, Weiss and Okada were summoned by Austin via a pre-recorded message. In it, he revealed that he wanted them to complete or abort their mission based on their conscience, advising them to use projection drive to travel to Amargosa to see the damage for themselves. Burke also left a message to endorse the plan despite possible treason charges. Lancaster then informed them he needed hydrogen from the warheads to prime the fusion cores for the EM and projection drives.
Once repaired, the Challenger warped to Amargosa. There, Weiss determined the Gelt had colony transports on the surface, including over two fusion-blasted cities. The crew also discovered the Ban Ki-moon with probable survivors. After a stop in an uncharted section of space, the senior staff voted to continue the mission with modification. With three warheads stripped, the two nuclear weapons targeted remote, uninhabited areas, while a third, reduced to a mere kinetic weapon, targeted farmland. A fourth was used against the planet’s orbital station. Lancaster had rigged the final one as a ship-to-ship fission weapon. Although a Gelt ship damaged the ship’s EM and projection-drive systems, the Challenger escaped going to warp. It returned to Nereid for repairs.
There, he, along with Weiss and Lancaster, were debriefed by Admirals Burke and Austin. They revealed that logging on the Challenger had been “disabled by the drive failures” and that he and the others would have to recreate the events verbally. Burke also revealed that Lancaster had told her about improvising a fission device for use in space ahead of time. The admirals approved of Okada’s decision to minimize civilian casualties and focus on military targets in space instead. The truth would get all of them Section 11 executions, but Austin and Burke could not sanction genocide when Gilead and Amargosa appeared to be salvageable. Okada, Weiss, and Lancaster were then permanently assigned to the Warp Program and given a month’s shore leave. Burke suggested Okada resume his brief affair on Thule where he and his lover could engage in “classified pillow talk.” He took her up on the suggestion.
Okada commanded the Challenger on its mission to Hanar. During its time there, he also commanded two reconnaissance missions to Amargosa. The first let Friese and Havak train Giddeus Modesto to be a starship pilot. On the second, they trained JT Austin and Connor Duffy as they delivered an alert to the resistance for the coming liberation. Okada allowed Austin and Duffy to choose where to send the kinetic rod delivering the message probes. They chose to take down the colony transport over Arcanum.
Appearances: No Marigolds in the Promised Land, Warped, Flight Blade, Storming Amargosa