Post by Lute on Oct 12, 2017 18:59:24 GMT -5
WEST CITY. Provisional Parliament Building.
The hearing commenced with a roar of voices mingling over the top of each other. Earth's most influential legislators were all crammed into the temporary Parliament hall. It was a building designed for a much smaller council, and that was evident by how close they were packed. It was practically shoulder to shoulder, like a section of nosebleed bleachers at a stadium. The cramped confines were only until the Kingdom rebuilt its governement center. Central City, the former home to the seat of government was still a crater after Lord Glacio made landfall there.
No decision had been made to where the new capital would be. In fact, few decisions had been made at all in the past few months. Earth was more divided and indecisive than it ever had. Months had gone by since the King's death. Yet, no consensus to replace the had been come to. Some thought it should be brought to a vote. A democratic election seemed fair enough.
There were many lords and old aristocrats among the ministers that thought they deserved the spot. Those that were also those closest in bloodline to King Ches who stepped forward, looking to clinch power for themselves. The arguments and deabtes never ceased. Earth and her colonies were a snake without a head. Soon to be a corpse in the chaos of civil war, unless something was done.
General Mathers moved long the aisle, his boots clicking on marble. He made his way to the hearing stand, broad and resolute as ever. The voices in the chamber died down. Most of out respect, some out of fear. He was a powerful man, in charge of Earth's entire military force, including the King's Guard. And he commanded respect, even out of his detractors.
One brave voice cried out, a shriek from the rafters. "War monger!"
The General made no expression, keeping his emotions in check. He simply folded his hands over the top of each other on the podium.
"Let us begin without further ado," the Speaker said from his perch. He was a shaggy humanoid dog with a great bush of a mustache. "General, you committed an act of war without the permission the Parliament. I will give you a moment to explain yourself."
"We received word from the Galactic Patrol that the Guardian of Earth had somehow fallen into hands of the Frieza Force. I simply launched a sortie to recover him. It was a joint task force with the Galactic King himself."
"Under whose authority?"
"I am the right hand of the King. I acted under his authority. I have been keeping Earth together amidst various rebellions and shielded from external threats. Yet, you've not questioned those actions?"
"The King is dead. A new King has not been chosen. How can you use his authority as an excuse? "
"With no royal orders, I am left to make my own decisions. Remember, it is the Parliament's job is to ensure a new King is chosen and inherits the throne." General Mathers replied.
The jab ended with many ministers red in the face in anger. A barrage of shouts echoed. The Speaker slammed his gavel, breaking it up.
"You engaged in war with the Frieza Force without our permission. You poked a sleeping dragon. Your actions have put this world and her citizens in grave danger."
General Mathers sighed and shook his head. "Fools. You saw what happened to Central City. We have been at war with the Frieza Force. Do you think because they've gone to lick their wounds, they won't return?"
"But, you further instigate them, risking more Earthling lives and assets, for one person? This--Guardian?"
"This Parliament has not been briefed on the Guardian and his role. That is information for the King's ears only. I can assure you he was a valuable asset to the prosperity of our planet. It is a shame we were not able to recover him."
"Conjecture!" someone cried out.
"Liar!" said another.
The Speaker and others began to lash each other. The gavel didn't stop the outbursts this time. General Mathers let them have at it for a few minutes. There were a surprising number of people that supported his decisions as well, from what he made out. That made him feel a bit better, but he knew he wasn't out of the fire yet.
Finally bored of their squabbling, he cut in again."If you do not want me to act on my authority as the leader of Earth's military, then elect a King or Regent to remove me from power. Until then, I will do whatever necessary."
The argument against the General ended and another broke loose about the process of selection. He wondered if this was the first time they had thought of the notion of a Regent. The tone shifted from how to pick the king, to who they should choose. Some of them suggested General Mathers and most withered at the suggestion. Hell, even General Mathers himself cringed.
"I do not seek the Monarchy for myself. Earth needs someone who has more experience leading from the civilian side of things. I am an old soldier, after all."
From his spot on the balcony, Director Stone watched the proceedings. The entire thing seemed like a waste of time. He was surprised anyone on Earth was against facing the Frieza Force at this time. Sure, the Parliament was divided, but that was literally because of Lord Glacio's actions. Had the Frieza Clan member not laid waste to the capital, they wouldn't be squabbling at all about who should lead and how.
Capsule Corp had ushered Earth to great success and expansion across the galaxy. Their tech fueled the planet's industries and enabled trade. They had an honorary position on the Parliament. Because they were a business entity, they always refrained from casting a vote or interacting. Not once in hundreds of years had Capsule Corp actually participated, despite the appointment. It went against the spirit of what Bulma Brief and Doctor Brief wished to accomplish.
Director Stone knew many of the ministers closely. Most of them had interactions with Capsule Corp from time to time. It was safe to say Stone had bought their support, as well. Capsule Corp didn't have to cast their vote because of some moral reason. No, it was because because their needs were already being met. Some would call it corruption, but Director Stone saw it as... encouragement. Money could make you a lot of friends, if you were smart.
He pushed his way out of his seat and down the steps to where General Mathers stood. He knew Mathers by reputation, but not personally. The man was a brilliant commander, but far too principled to make friends with. The old soldier didn't value wealth the way others did. He wasn't easy to encourage.
"Director Stone," the Speaker asked. "What is the meaning of this intrusion?"
"Gentleman, good afternoon," he spoke into the mic. "I am here to volunteer myself as Regent of Earth. I have led Capsule Corp for a decade now. Never before has our corporation seen such large profit margins and wide-spread success. Even with terrorist attacks and a lack of direction from the descendants of the Brief family, we prevailed. I have the leadership experience required to see that this great planet does not fall into chaos."
Director Stone could see General Mathers narrowing both eyes at him from his peripheral. That alone made him smile.
There was an unexpected silence over the Parliament. Camera bots fluttered overhead, flashing pictures. There were no members of the media here, but he could see the headlines no in his mind's eye, and all of it positive. It also probably helped that he owned most of them.
Little else was said. Director Stone left the building shortly after. His security droids helped him push through a barrage of interviewers trying to ask him questions.
The seed was planted. He need only to give it space to grow. The Parliament broke for a few hours and resumed later in the evening. As Director Stone was eating dinner and enjoying a cigar, he watched the newscast.
Director Stone of Capsule Corp has now been chosen as the Regent of Earth!
Stone smiled and tapped a button on his table, bringing up the holo-console. Icons and data streamed through the air. He started to type his letter of resignation for Capsule Corp.
After all, he had a much more important job now.