The good Lord said, "Be Fruitful and Multiply. And that's just what folk did. Centuries and Ages passed and good people had more good people. They spread out, found new lands and developed new ways.
And for a mighty long time, Earth-That-Was found a way to keep the people thrivin'. First it was the trees for fire and building homes, pastures for farmers, fields for rancher. Then came stone for quarries, precious minerals and the natural resources. As time went on, people just needed more and more, whether it be fuel, power, land, or even the air.
Humanity sucked the life out of the Earth-That-Was until she had no more to give.
Not willing to give up, the smartest of those folk looked outward, hoping it wasn't too late. They sent out huge machines to a likely system that had dozens of planets and hundreds of moons. More than enough for those that would take their chances elsewhere. So began the terraforming process that would take decades. Those on Earth-That-Was waited, hoping to survive long enough to make the difference elsewhere.
How much of the population from the Home world that came into the Black is unknown. Rumors and legends still abound as that there are still folk trying to live on that legendary place.
But, a great many migrated in monstrous arks, taking decades to get to their new homes. At least one or two generations lived and died without ever seeing their destination. They lived to keep the engines running, the life-support systems functioning and advancing technology and understanding as much as they could. More than a few died along the way; accidents, malfundtions and the like occurred from time to time.
There was a fair mixing of peoples and their ways. It resulted in a mixing of cultures, with English and Chinese having the dominant place, at least on the surface. All thinking, knowing, they'd have to work together in their new home.
And then they arrived.
The terraforming process was complex. Air had to be breathed, gravity adjusted, creatures great and small introduced, first among them being algae and bacteria. But all is not perfect and each planet still has its quirks that affect the folks on them.
The first two planets terraformed and settled was Londinium and Sihnon. They became the cultural and economic centers of the system. They encouraged order while encouraging diversity and acceptance.
But, folk are rarely satisfied with what they have. Pioneers left the two great cities, looking for that grass that is greener on the other planet. They took with them hope.
They also took the usual fare: corruption, crime, greed, and war.
As disagreements and tensions rose, the central planets sought to unify the worlds under a central parliament, whose goal, at least outwardly, was to promote peace and prosperity. It would do so by regulating interplanetary matters and trade laws. The idea caught on quickly, and the idea was quickly ratified to form the Alliance.
They had the idea, that if they could set civilized standards for every folk, from cradle to grave, each person would have a better life: safe and secure. And, of a certainty, there were some folk would honestly and truly believed that. Others saw it as an opportunity for unlimited power.
The Parliament formed their military to seek out and "solve" the unrest throughout the system. Most saw that the means to do this was to maintain a strict control over the people. This was a staggering job and eventually led to many local and interplanetary coucils and pograms to enforce the laws.
This didn't hold too well with some. The Border and Rim worlds were still self-governing, resisiting the "meddling" of their parent worlds. They found it more suitable that each planet had the laws that worked best for their people. Folks on these world had long-since learned to be self-reliant in order to survive, and a fair amount of free thought went along with it.
The Alliance saw these worlds as disruptive influences and sought to "bring them into the civilized fold." The people of the Alliance welcomed the idea, wanting to help those who could not, without their superior technologies and education, help themselves. They opened their arms wide, expecting the outer folk to come running. And they did...
They came with guns.
The Unification War was the most devastating in human history. Six long years with battles on almost every Border and Rim world left scars on the land, and the people. Some of the uter planers joined the Independents, including Hera, Persephone and Shadow. They brought together their forces, known as the Independent Faction. "Browncoats" was another term, coined for the Independent's uniform which included brown dusters.
Parliament began drafting its citizens to join the fray. It wasn't until much later that they were astonished to learn that half of the Independents force was entirely volunteers. Still, they dismissed the show of force, believing that their greater number, superior technology and advanced medicines would bring the day to them.
The war lasted for six long years, on land, sea and in the Black of space. The largest land battle was in Serentiy Valley on Hera. It lasted for seven weeks before the Independent High Command surrendered. Even then, the Independent forces continued fighting for another two weeks. Those soldiers were captured and tried for war crimes. Ultimately, ostensibly, they were released as a gesture of peace though it was also a political maneuver to avoid matyrdom in the future.
The majority of the battles occurred on the Border and Rim worlds who were aligning with one side or another. The Central Planets never experienced the hardships incurred from the war. To this day, there are many locations where the battles scarred the lands and the people. Shadow was effectively destroyed and became uninhabitable. Major cities on Athens and Persephone were bombed. Smaller planers suffered as well. Whitefall and others did not have battles on their soils, but they suffered dearly from the disrupted trade: supplies were almost impossible to attain.
After the War, life returned to normal, at least on the surface. Still, folk from either side haven't forgotten, nor forgiven. The Alliance has command over every planet and citizen, on paper at least. But they are still stuggling to instill and enforce their contol on the outer planets. They have absolute authority on the Core worlds.
In the Core wolds, at every public place, they have eyes watching. Most believe this to be true in certain private areas as well. In exchange, the citizens enjoy comforts not found on the other worlds. There, the Alliance is slowly extending its authority. Truthfully, they just do not have the manpower or ships to implement this wholesale. They have hired private security firms to help with the matter, but the cracks are there for those wily and brave enough to use them.
A good example is slavery. It is illegal, and harshly punished when found. But mine owners, manufacturers, and others use slave labor in their operations. They can pay large sums for human labor, making up the money spent in keeping the slaves on a subsistance level of living. Occasionally, the Alliance makes arrests, but the operation is usually up and running a few weeks later, sometimes with a new name, sometimes not. It's the same story with indentured servants. it is illegal, but an acknowledged and accepted part of life.