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LOM Order of Bartok Rank Challenge: The Black Knight Tavern . The Black Knight Tavern is a public house set on a height near the Iremore, the capital of Rainos. King Bartok founded it as a place of rest and gathering for the warriors of Rainos. . In October, I promised to treat the defenders of Rainos who fought against the Mythronian invasion to cake on the shores of Rainos. Complications arose and ensued, so I have not been able to fulfill my vow until now. Welcome to the official victory celebration and thanks to the people who kept Rainos free! As soon as it was clear that the tyranny of Mythron had gained no foothold on the shores of Rainos, invitations flew from the royal castle and both drink and entertainment climbed to the Black Knight Tavern above Iremore. King Bartok I, owner of the establishment, was the next to arrive in his finest suit of armor. Close behind him was Lord Hector Darkbeard, Archdruid of Hadran. "Hector! It is wonderful to see you. It's been months since we last met." "I can see that you're trying to win your country with drink where trickery failed. When I heard the news, I had to catch the first dragon headed this way. By the way, the Troynan's new Imperator sends his regards. Anyone else make it yet?" "No, most of the heroes are still on the coast. We have some time before they can reach the party." ~~~Jacob Pennington, Honorary Rainosian~~~ Sure enough, the first did not arrive until winter was underway... but when people did start to arrive, they came in a flood. "Mayor Jaldor, I presume? Thank you for defending Red Sands; if ever you wish to renounce your Outlaw past, we will be only too willing to accept you. But, I heard you were in Carthal for the Tourney - how did you get here?" "Thank you, your Highness, but I have unfinished business in Mythron. As for our presence here, it was a simple matter for my friend, Gorbus, to use our transport stone to bring me and several others from Carthal." "Claudia, Gorbus, welcome to Iremore. It's always a pleasure to meet someone else in the trade." ~~~Toa Infernum, Lord of Guaire~~~ A dangerous-looking man followed Jaldor's Crimson Knights along the path. "Your Majesty, Rego Arian at your service." "It is good to meet you at last, Lord Arian. I have heard only the best news of your army and its exploits. Welcome to Iremore." "It's my pleasure to escape Carthal. The master of my Tourney guild, George Marshall, is trying to make the lot of us wear the most ridiculous uniforms." "Speaking of Marshall, didn't we send him an invitation as well?" "He received it, but seeing as he was fighting for the other side in the invasion, he elected not to come." "It appears that we underestimated his intelligence by a small amount. Thank you, Lord Arian." ~~~Adam Brunsting, General of the Dragon Clan~~~ "Hello, your Majesty." "You've grown since the last time I saw you, Spine. How goes the campaign?" "We had some mix-ups due to Mythronian lies, but we made it through. Everything slows down in the winter, I fear." "That's why it's the best time for merrymaking, my lad. Enjoy the party." In response to general complaints, here is an improved version of Spine complete with the proper classic smiley face. After General Spine's Dragon Knights followed him in, no fresh faces arrived for several days until... ~~~Sean B., Citizen of Rainos~~~ "Well, what are you waiting for, lad? Knock on the door and ask if this is the way to Bourne! What with all of these map changes, I can't tell left from right anymore." No sooner had the younger man knocked than the door was opened by King Bartok, who seemed to recognize the old knight. "My gods! It can't be - Sir Maxwell?" "Yes, and who are you? The King of Mythron?" "Rainos, actually... but what are you doing here? I thought you must be dead." "Not dead, betrayed. Jackson and I were heading for Bourne, but if your Majesty has free drink, we might as well stop in." ~~~The Lost Epic, Honorary Rainosian~~~ Bartok spotted a girl in armor coming up the path behind the knight and his follower. "You would be Kailash the Outlaw, I imagine?" he asked. "In person," she answered. "It was difficult to make it here - do you have something against Outlaws in Rainos?" "Not as such, no, but we don't react well to anyone wearing Mythronian armor. Feel free to stop by the Royal Armory to be fitted for a new one - it's the least we can do for your services." ~~~That Guy You Saw Earlier, Rainosian Adventurer~~~ The next day, a party of warriors arrived at the inn. "Vemados of the Shadow Allegiance and company, reporting for off-duty!" the leader declared. "Not the entrance I was expecting from a member of the stealth clan, but welcome all the same! Maybe your Masked leader will impress us when he arrives," Bartok laughed. ~~~Caleb R., Ruler of Enalica~~~ "Er, your Majesty, the Masked is already here. We think he came down the chimney." "Oh..." As the days passed, more and more Rainosians arrived to celebrate their continued independence. Ibers from Falmore, William the Scarred and his orcs... ...delegates of the MacFiercest clan... ~~~Gilbert Despathens, King of Rainos and Captain of the Krak ...and finally Cedric the Bull came to the door of the Black Knight Tavern. "G'day, your Maj., I'm here for the drinks." "You're late as usual, Lord Cedric, but I'm glad you made it." "Yeah, we didn't get the letter until last week thanks to some half-wit Dragon bloke in a furry hat, but we sailed right over on the clan's new flagship. Which reminds me, the man you wanted to knight is right here behind me." "So you are Steven Georgeson, the soldier who helped Rego hold the seas and before that fought for the Ibers in Falmore, alongside the Dragons against Ironknuckles and in many battles for your own clan. It will be my pleasure to bestow a knighthood upon you." "Thanks. It would be my equal pleasure to have a quick dismissal from service and a young retirement back home, but you know what my lord Cedric says about that..." "Well, I'm sure we wouldn't want to displease Lord Cedric. We will hold the ceremony this afternoon, as soon as you are rested." So that's how I move up to the Order of Bartok and earn Ambassador status in the Lands of Mythron and, more importantly, how the King thanked his loyal supporters for their parts in September's invasion. My next build (if all goes well) will be the actual interior of the Black Knight, and not only will it include the cake, but it might also promote me one more rank if it doesn't match the January UC. In the meantime, please enjoy a small hole in the fourth wall. The "tavern" started with a gable I built while distracting myself from the monstrosity of the interior. I was trying to figure out other ways to use dark tan masonry bricks, and I ended up with the best roof I have ever made. The rest followed from there, fueled by other parts of my first Bricklink order ever. Isn't stained glass wonderful? Masonry bricks are useful for almost everything... except, arguably, masonry. This is my favorite shot of all, and a good place to end.

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