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The United Colonies of Predstrasza

The Serbian Protectorates are among the wildest of the member states of SolGov; less a nation and more a relatively contiguous galactic space whose residents speak the same language and hate the rest of the galaxy slightly more than they hate each other. Occupying the still burning flotsam of an overly ambitious colonization effort long lost to antiquity, the Protectorates consist of a number of squabbling outposts calling themselves nation states struggling against the darkness of ongoing raids by the remains of the revolutionaries that successfully shattered the original effort, canny pirates, each other and foriegn powers looking to harden up soft recruits. Sturdy, low tech solutions are bolstered by spit, canniness and where necessary sacrifice to keep the machinery of Serbian society turning; they have so far avoided annexation by other SolGov entities by merit of providing a buffer against an otherwise lawless frontier, and a willingness to set aside feuds and join ranks against overt aggression on the part of outsiders. All of this is presided over and facilitated by the Žitnica, a sacred neutral ground that journeys from planet to planet in the empty black.

Each faction corresponds roughly to a branch of the original socialist entity that laid down the colonies, though how true to this history they stick varies from house to house. One of the main lines of contention lies between those houses which operate on a meritocratic, if corrupt, system and those which venerate the bloodlines of their "Great Leaders" as the solemn and burdened arbitrators of equity. All necessarily possess robust defensive armadas, kept sharp in dealing with raids by the defensive armadas of other member states and the lesser warlords and corsairs that make up the rest of the region’s inhabitants. After raw or lightly processed material the biggest export is a particularly pragmatic brand of mercenary, to the degree that a running joke in surrounding polities is that the difference between a Serbian mercenary and a Serbian pirate is whether he thinks he can take you or not.

All of this is represented at the SolGov layer by a handful of representatives whispering in the ears of one Commodore Arkan Markovic, the latest captain of the verdant haven called Žitnica. An irreplaceable relic of the original colonization effort, she is a self propelled asteroid whose interior is given over mostly to hydroponics on a scale few of the states can themselves muster. In exchange for access to her life giving stores, they treat her as a neutral ground and an arbitrator of greater disputes. Nominally she represents the high level government in the region, though in practice it is more like trying to coerce a pack of wolverines into working together with a single tripe ration to wave before their noses.