Mam'selle Hepzibah hails from the feline alien Mephitisoid race, whose imperial ambitions nearly surpassed and overwhelmed the Shi'ar race 1200 years ago. However, after Shi'ar commander T'kyll Alabar slaughtered the women of a Mephitisoid abbey, a distillation of their pheromone control powers enabled the Shi'ar to conquer the Mephitisoid people. The Shi'ar quarantined the Mephitisoids on their homeworld under martial law, fostering a bitter hatred of the Shi'ar and leading to numerous revolts.
Centuries later, imprisoned in the Slave Pits of Alsibar, Hepzibah encountered the human Christopher Summers. Her torture at the hands of her jailers caused Summers to rebel alongside Hepzibah, Ch’od, Cr+eee, and Raza. The quintet escaped the Pits, stole a starship, and went on to form the Starjammers, a team of interstellar pirates led by Summers - as the swashbuckling Corsair - who operate mostly within the Shi'ar Galaxy. Hepzibah was given her alias by Corsair named after a beautiful female skunk in an Earth comic strip.
During her time as the Starjammers' weapons officer, Hepzibah and Corsair fell in love, and it was not long before she took him as her mate and the pair were bonded for life. However, Hepzibah's long-festering hatred of the Shi'ar strained her relationship with Corsair. While aiding the Shi'ar against the threat of the alien Uncreated, Corsair was forced to re-route control of Hepzibah's weapons station in order to prevent her from firing on a Shi'ar ship. After the battle, all criminal charges against the Starjammers were dropped by Shi'ar Empress Lilandra. Seizing the opportunity, Corsair chose to retire with Hepzibah and live a normal life. Their happiness was cut short, though, after they and the other Starjammers were captured by the Collector. They escaped with the help of the X-Man Wolverine and resumed their pirating ways.