The NC has been fighting in the Drone Regions and in Cloud Ring. They evicted Ev0ke from Cloud Ring and are now moving further South into Fountain and IT/IT Pet space.
PL has been in Venal and causing problems for NC mostly to try to extort NC into giving them a contract to go after IT. NC seems to be unwilling to do that so PL has been working an extortion type of racket taking moons in Venal and hot dropping NC capital ships when an opportunity arises.
NC strategically has probably decided to fight IT in the South rather than the North, thus the march into Fountain.
NC has been periodically fighting PL, but it does not appear that PL is a major NC target. NC has been pretty much using PL as a Darwinistic force to kill stupid, lazy and/or incompetent players that are in the NC. PL is annoying at best. If PL was a threat to the NC, there would be far far far more effort put into evicting them from Venal.
PL demonstrated early this year that they are not competent to hold space and evolved into basically a super mercenary alliance. They do what they do because that's what they do. My guess is their primary target is IT. They assume - probably correctly - that if they annoy NC enough, NC will write them a check and they can go after their favorite target, IT.
PL has also been fighting against most of the 2nd stringer PvPers in the NC or worse carebear ratters. The first team has been off in the Southwest or the Drone regions. This causes PL's already enormous egos to swell to epic proportions. This is good because when PL's combined egos cause a fail cascade, it will be worthy of popcorn and a few beers for the show.
Oh back to the South... IT will do what it does, abandon it's allies as soon as IT appears to be in trouble. This will cause their allies - The Initiative, Red Alliance, White Noise, etc to implode. It what Eve does. Rinse, repeat. As long as Sir Molle is around, IT will be around and holding space.