However, even though the Empire is at the peak of its power, and can only grow stronger, there's certainly problems brewing within the royal family. Since IX died on Weihria, there's no longer a real unifying force within the royal family. The bickering between the different "camps" has reached a dangerous level of tension. Among the camps are the Rios - Klara, Luca, etc., Vlodovics - James, Tod, Tisra, etc., and the Xaimoungkhouns - Melis, Vincenzo, Kseniya, etc. The ringleaders of each group are trying to take power, or at least discredit one or both of the others.
One such argument is currently in progress at the new palace. In this instance, James is expressing his anger at being passed over, yet again, to take over as monarch after Luca abdicated. His argument is that the next oldest child of the former Emperor should have been given a chance to rule. Klara, now the Empress, completely disagrees. It's a private argument since it's not something that needs to be heard by anyone other than the two of them.
"James," Klara said, wanting just end this argument as it has gone on for the past 20 minutes, "this is stupid. Why are you so intent on becoming the Emperor? I get that your father named you Emperor in his will, but good gods, you'd be a horrible leader. The way you whine and bitch when you don't get your way would make the entire nation hate you."
"I don't whine and bitch." James said. "I merely wish for justice to be done. I should have been Emperor, but your whore of a mother prevented that. She took power illegally, and made it out as though she should have been the ruler. Now you took over. She abdicated, I should have been given the throne. But no, my father left the throne empty for the duration of the war. What a fucking idiot."
"How can you come in here and call your sister a whore and your father an idiot? They have done more for this nation than you ever did. When your father was forming an alliance with the Immanence and formally allying with Unity what were you doing? Relaxing on Res'Ort, flaunting your wealth. When the tensions rose with Unity following the Invasion of New Harris, where were you? From what I recall, you were vacationing with Tod on Weihria. When your father died, you didn't even attend his funeral on Haroma. During the war, you didn't do much, preferring to work on the homefront while the rest of us fought on the front lines. My mother saw this in you and made the right choice. You are not fit to be the Emperor of this nation. This nation does not need a leader that would be an Anean version of Caligula."
"You're no better than your mother. Just another gold digging whore running this nation."
"Let me stop you there. How am I gold digging? I married someone of a lesser status than myself. Probably had far less wealth than me. Yet I am gold digging? Are you just pulling out insults in an attempt to hurt my feelings? Let's be fair, I am not Empress because I cared about what others think of me. Are you done? If so, leave. Now."
"Yeah, I'm done. You're going to regret crossing me and my family."
"You really are a dumbass. I AM your family. But whatever, keeping being a dumbass fox. Try to be smart or you'll find that not even our blood will protect you from me."
James left Klara's office, slamming the door on the way out. The force nearly broke the door right off the hinges and shook the entire office. Klara sighed as he left in relief, but she was also afraid of what he'd do. This was probably the angriest she had seen him lately, and if he's anything like IX, he'd do something very stupid. The cold war between the families is at that point where anything can be used as ammunition against the others.
She really just hopes that James is smart enough to cool down before he does something he'll regret.
Near the Capitol, the Senate was ending a late session which would pick up in the morning. In this instance, a pair of senators, organic ones, from the Immanence are a focus. These two are among the most influential of the Immanence's senators and one of them is likely to take over as President of the Senate in the next election. This makes them a very high value target to certain parties.
The two got into their cars back to their hotel. Initially, there was nothing wrong with the ride. That changed when the vehicles made a turn off the regular road and head into one of the more dangerous parts of the city. The SUVs sped up, reaching about 70 miles per hour. The senators didn't speak up about it, out of fear. About an hour after leaving the Capitol, the vehicles came to a stop in the middle of the projects.
After making sure that there was no one around that could see them, the driver of each vehicle went to the back door and pulled the Senator out. With the butt of the rifle, the driver hit the senators in the head, knocking them out. The drivers then threw the senators over their shoulders and walked into a run down building.
After hours passed and no word from the senators and the police were unable to find them, things got significantly more intense on the planet. As per the protocols, Alpha Centauri was locked down save for law enforcement and military, and the Federal Police got involved in the investigation.
This also prompted Klara to send a message to the Furnisher.
To: Furnisher of the Immanence
From: Empress Klara Xaimoungkhoun
It is with much regret that I must inform you that two Senators representing the Immanence have gone missing on Alpha Centauri. I know not what happened to them and I have a feeling that the police will not find out who did it. I fear that this is a situation that will require both our people working together.
I ask that, if you wish, our law enforcement agencies work together to track down the kidnappers of the Senators. This is a major crime, one that I haven't seen in my time. I cannot let it go unpunished.
If you cannot assist, that is fine. I mostly just wanted to inform you of the incident.