Mariana Anastasievič Ivanovič (Маріана Анастасіевіч Івановіч) [maɾi'ana anas'tasiɛ'vitʃ i'vano'vitʃ], reigning as Mariana I (Маріана І.), is the current Empress of Slovonia. She inherited the throne after her mother, Empress Anastasia II, was killed in a train crash in 2005.
She was born on October 21, 1986 in the Slovograd Palace. Even from a young age, Mariana was a happy and carefree bundle of fun. She was loved by all, especially her mother—the two had an unbreakable bond and were inseparable. More than mother and daughter, Anastasia and Mariana were the bestest of pals. They did everything together: watching sports games, enjoying theatrical performances, visiting amusement parks, and skiing in the winter. And so they lived, happy as can be... until a fateful day changed everything.
In April of 2005, Anastasia and Ivan were planning to embark on a trip to South America. They'd go by train to Slovograd Airport and then fly the rest of the way. Mariana really wanted to go along with them, but she was down with the flu. So her parents convinced her to stay at home and rest. On the cool morning of April 6, 2005, Anastasia and her husband boarded their train. As it slowly pulled away, Mariana waved a tearful goodbye from the platform, and Anastasia gave her one more glance through the window. Little did she know this would be their last moment together—just minutes later, both of her parents were killed when their train collided with a bus that failed to stop at the crossing.
For Mariana, who was just 18, the whole world was turned upside-down. The mother figure and best friend, whom she'd known and loved all her life, had been prematurely ripped away from her by a cruel twist of fate. This was all too much for Mariana to handle and she became severely depressed—she even contemplated taking her own life on a few occasions (although every time she was successfully talked out of it). But eventually, the new Empress found the strength to stop grieving the past and look towards the future.
Since she was handed the keys so soon, Mariana knew close to nothing about how to rule an empire. But she was fortunate to inherit a wonderful team of advisors and civil servants from Anastasia II's reign, who all pledged allegiance to their new monarch and supported her during her settling-in phase. With each passing day, Mariana felt more and more at home with her new role, and eventually she became a natural at it just like her mother was.
As the Empress of Slovonia, Mariana has kept most of her mother's liberal policies. However, she is markedly more authoritarian on matters of foreign policy, taking a particularly tough stance against mass immigration, international aid, and Islam. She's also outspoken in condemning nations such as Russia and China, for their lack of personal freedom and aggression towards their neighboring states.
Ideology and views
She doesn't consider herself either left-wing or right-wing, and refuses to be pigeonholed into any particular ideology. In fact, she thinks the whole idea of partisan democracy is quite foolish. "If you only care what's best for your party, you don't care what's best for your people. An elected leader has no incentive to think in the long term if they're just going to be replaced in a few years," she once said in an interview with the Slovograd Post.
Mariana's policies would be best described as socially liberal and economically centrist. She supports a social market economy (AKA 'Rhine capitalism'), which combines a relatively free market with generous social programs. However, she thinks that economic freedom is something best enjoyed in moderation—too much free market is just as harmful as too little—and isn't afraid to intervene if necessary, to keep the corporate giants in line. These policies have made Slovonia a great place for workers and businesses alike.
But when it comes to personal lives of individuals, Mariana is absolutely opposed to any restrictions, other than necessary to protect them from the four elementary crimes: murder, assault, theft, and fraud. In particular, she's staunchly against the idea of banning 'vice' (drugs, prostitution, gambling) just because some might find it distasteful, or punishing crimes with no clear victim (like not wearing a bicycle helmet). For her, personal freedom and self-determination are sacred above all else. It's all a matter of giving individuals complete choice over their bodies and minds.
Despite her liberalism, the Empress has a quite protectionist foreign policy. She refuses to allow mass immigration or give foreign aid, because she puts her own people first. "It's their [government's] own damn fault they ended up like that, and I'm not going to reward them by giving them free food and cash. Perhaps the leaders should look in their own big fat pockets first," she says about third-world countries with corrupt governments. However, she doesn't mind international trade as long as it's beneficial. In fact, she's opposed to placing economic sanctions against any country, as she thinks it unfairly punishes ordinary citizens while having no effect on the top brass.
Rare for a Western leader, Mariana holds an unwavering hostile view towards Islam and other Abrahamic religions, as in her opinion their teachings and values are 'medieval' and grossly incompatible with modern society, especially so after the recent spate of terrorist attacks and hate crimes around the world. In 2015, following the Paris attacks, Mariana passed a new law that banned the public practice of any foreign religion. Contrary to what you'd think, the law was met with little to no controversy—the Abrahamic religions were never popular in the first place.
FOR: body freedoms, freedom of choice, private property, right to bear arms, private enterprise, workers' rights, universal healthcare, welfare
AGAINST: morality laws, indoctrination, nanny state, communism, unrestricted capitalism, political parties, Abrahamic religions, mass immigration, foreign aid, trade sanctions, war
Economic Axis: Social (69.5 % Equality, 30.5 % Markets)
Diplomatic Axis: Balanced (54.8 % Nation, 45.2 % World)
Civil Axis: Liberal (67.7 % Liberty, 32.3 % Authority)
Societal Axis: Very Progressive (83.7 % Progress, 16.3 % Tradition)
Left-Leaning Total Isolationist Cosmopolitan Libertine
Collectivism: +33 %
Authoritarianism: 0 %
Internationalism: –100 %
Tribalism: –33 %
Liberalism: +83 %
Slovograd Palace (Словоградско Палац) is the official residence of the Empress of Slovonia. Located near the center of Slovograd city, the grounds are normally closed off to the public, but guests have occasionally been invited inside. The palace has its own library, garden, vehicle garage, and hospital. Security is provided by the Imperial Guard, an elite military force whose sole purpose is defending the monarch. A 'Changing of the Guard' is conducted every Sunday at noon, accompanied by marching music. In 2018, there was a minor security scare at the palace: a 25-year-old man tried to breach the perimeter by smashing his car through a rear entrance gate, but was quickly neutralized by guards. After that incident, additional security measures were installed.
For official occasions like state visits, celebrations, and parades, the Empress of Slovonia is transported in an armored BMW 7 Series sedan. The car is driven by an experienced member of the Imperial Guard.
But on a daily basis, she prefers to drive her own vehicle: a 2016 Toyota Highlander sport utility.
For visits abroad, both official and private, she travels in her custom-built motor yacht, the 90-m (300') Empress of Slovonia (Словонска Царіца). The boat is equipped with hybrid propulsion, being able to run on sail, battery, or diesel power. It also has several classified defense capabilities.
The late Empress Anastasia II had an Airbus A340–300 jet for that purpose. However, Mariana never used the aircraft because of her terrible fear of flying. It is now on static display at the National Museum of Slovonia, housing exhibits related to the life of the former Empress.
Fashion and style
She's red/green colorblind, as a result of her father having the condition and her mother being a carrier. But this hasn't stopped her from living a normal life. Otherwise, she's in pretty good health.
Did you know?
In addition to her native Slovonian, she can speak well in English, Swedish, and Spanish.
She has an amazing singing voice, but she won't sing in front of anyone other than her closest friends or daughter. Also, she's clueless when it comes to reading music.
Her net worth is an estimated $2 billion USD. The exact value of all her properties and income is unknown, as she doesn't release that info publicly.
The port city of Marianopol (Маріанопол) is named after her.
There are rumors that she's romantically attracted to other women, but Mariana hasn't confirmed or denied those rumors. "That's nobody's business but mine," she says.
She loves to eat, and will stuff her face whenever she has the chance.
Her favorite numbers are 2 and 6.
In other languages
Slovonian: Маріана І. Словонска
Belarusian: Марыянна I Словонская
Catalan: Mariana I de Eslovònia
Croatian: Marijana I. Slovonska
Czech: Mariana I. Slovonská
Danish: Mariane I. af Slovonien
Dutch: Mariane I van Slovonië
French: Marianne I de Slovonie
German: Marianna I. von Slowonien
Italian: Marianna I di Slovonia
Norwegian: Mariane I. av Slovonia
Portuguese: Mariana I de Eslovónia
Russian: Марианна I Словонская
Serbian: Мариjана I. Словонска
Spanish: Mariana I de Eslovonia
Swedish: Mariane I. av Slovonien
Ukrainian: Маріанна I Словонська