The Unification War was a travesty, an act of naked fascism against frontier worlds so diverse and destitute that their submission was not worth the cost in lives, material, and hostility garnered. We, gentlemen, have created generations of enemies.
L. C. Vallandigham
Charity out of spite, resistance in submission. Loosing everything can produce strange associations indeed.
On an outlying farm, the sick grandfather of a family was kidnapped. Can the kidnappers be stopped before they deliver him off-planet?
Ships, that have character, are the best means to get to the stars.
The ruling family depends on some magical artifact or place to secure their right to rule. A monarch isn't considered legitimate until he or she has been "accepted" by the artifact or place, whatever that might entail. It is also possible that some one else, not of the ruling family, could be accepted as the legitimate heir... A fact which the monarchs would like to keep secret.