My muses, because it's more fun having more than one of them. I started off with Cherry and Mempi, who started seriously sucking around the beginning of 2007. Then at the end of semester one 2007, when I had PILES of stuff I had to write and draw and study for at uni, Cabernet Sauvignon appeared, and I got everything done. Cherry and Mempi got the sack, and Cab Sav took prime position. She's now the captain of the Cork, which has a crew comprised of such muses as Semillon Blanc, Rielsing, Pinot Noir and others. They're the Cork's crew. Sallie named their ship, cos she's witty like that. The muses can be anything, really, but since their first incarnation was as a crew of pirates, I tend to refer to them that way. Don't worry, they've been drawn as ninjas, too X3

Cabernet Sauvignon

Charge businessy crap (taxes, admin, etc)
Colour dark red
Accessory boots
Loves swords, taking charge
Hates television, distractions
Reference gutsy red
Cab Sav is the captain of the Cork, because she takes charge of the most important and yet least fun aspects of my productive life, stuff like taxes, admin, all that. She began her life as a warrior in GuildWars, because I wanted a character called Cabernet Sauvignon, and also a warrior to buy all the girly armour Nimay didn't want. I started sketching her a bit, turned her into my clothes-horse-come-muse, and the beginings of the Cork were born. Living up to her name, Cab Sav is a gutsy red. She loves to show off her assets, usually in the form of a corset and a cocky eyebrow-raise, and to assert her authority over the rest of the crew. She has an impressive collection of swords, probably enough to match her equally impressive collection of boots.

Semillon Sauvignon Blanc

Charge drawing
Colour white
Accessory masks
Loves messing with people's minds, clouds
Hates silence, blank pages
Shortly following Cab Sav's introduction to GuildWars, along came Semillon. Semillon is around to be the Illusion and pants-wearing mesmer, since Lynnlita could never be seen in anything but an elegant dress. As the muse in charge of drawing and sketching, Semillon loves to create pretty pictures in the air with light, or mess with people's minds by creating illusions right in front of them. She enjoys watching the clouds create patterns and shapes in the sky, and playing with them herself. As the second muse created, Semillon takes the position of first mate and really idolises her captain. She loves a sexy corset and knee-high pair of boots, and is never seen without a mask over her face. It's all about creating the illusions, of course.

Sparkling Shiraz

Charge Silent Harmony
Colour orange
Accessory jewellery
Loves flirting, drinking, fire, attention
Hates spiders, rudeness
Another of the GuildWars girlies, Shiraz is the most adorable little pyromaniac you've ever seen. She acts perfectly sweet and innocent, but she's not fooling anyone. She knows all too well how to flick her hips in just the right way to get what she wants from a man. She loves to play with fire, quite literally, and can be quite dangerous with it if that flick of the hips were to be ignored. As the muse taking charge of Silent Harmony, Shiraz is equally at home in the rollicking pubs of Raykin with a glass of Liquid Sunset, or in the more reserved châteaux of Llayad with a glass of her namesake. As a bit of a livewire, though, she definitely prefers Raykin. Sparkling Brut is her younger brother, and while she's very protective of him, she's not above batting her eyelids at him as to any other man.

Grange Hermitage

Charge other creative writings
Colour purple
Accessory hats
Loves cooking, garlic
Hates noise, wings
Grange sets himself a little bit apart from the rest of the crew. He's easily the most normal of the bunch, and often backs away slowly from the relative insanity they all seem to harbour, especially as a group. Grange seeks solitude in the kitchen as the ship's cook, and enjoys the peace and serenity of the outdoors where he can think clearly and make up his own stories. He loves to watch other people and create lives and stories about them in his head. He tends to go for casual attire, casual to the point of unbuttoned shirts, and he's always seen wearing a hat, his excuse being that if he takes it off he'll have serious hat hair, so we'll take his word for it. Not one for showing off, Grange is happy to work behind the scenes without recognition, but he won't hide his joy at being appreciated should anyone care to show it.

Merlot

Charge revelations
Colour brown
Accessory tattoos
Loves flirting, sharp things
Hates clothes, scars, Rosé
Reference smooth drop
Merlot's mind is all over the place. Whenever I have a sudden idea that fills in a major plot hole in the story--like why the twins don't talk, what Yan's motives are, how character X fits in, how the story ends and how to get there--it's attributed to Merlot. He can be having a smooth and normal conversation with someone, then suddenly yell out something of no relevence as though everyone should know what he's on about. It makes him difficult to have a conversation with, or at least one that will sustain the same topic for more than five minutes. He loves his tattoos (which change depending on the context of the picture. He's a muse. I can do that) and is proud of showing them off. This, of course, means going shirtless, but he's not so indecent that he'll walk around in the nick. Not too often, anyway.

Riesling

Charge painting (digitally and physically)
Colour green
Accessory cloaks
Loves threatrics, making a mess, animals (especially Rosé)
Hates her hair
Reference grassy citrus
Riesling loves to be dramatic, standing in the wind with hands on hips, chest out and cape and hair flying. She loves animals, particularly cats, and the ship's cat, Rosé, is rarely far from her side. As a ranger in GuildWars, she has tamed a number of the game's big cats as a beast master and, of course, loves her long coats for swishing dramatically. Her GuildWars character actually resulted in a slight change of design--her hair's still messy and fuzzy, but it's usually tied in pigtails now. Riesling has a bright, friendly attitude and is always willing to help her crewmates, especially if it involves physical activity. She's not quite so strong at the more intellectual side of life, but she has great reflexes and a strong work ethic and she loves to do what she can.

Sparkling Brut

Charge web design
Colour cream
Accessory fur
Loves fluffy things, his axe, the two combined
Hates ponces, weakness, anything he can't hack through with his axe
Sparkling Brut, to rhyme with brute, is big, strong and more than a little bit dense. He's very methodical and needs to have everything perfectly organised in his mind before anything will work. Failing that, he'll hack at it with his axe either until it does work, or it's so dead that it will never work again. A man of so few words as to be monosyllabic, Brut is charged with web design, from searching for the right images, Photoshopping them to hell and back, then finally coding the layout up and getting it functioning properly. He's as protective of his older sister, Shiraz, as she is of him, though his methods of defense tend to be more violent. Brut loves his axe. Sometimes, hacking at a layout with it is the only thing that will make it work.

Pinot Noir

Charge French
Colour blue
Accessory coats
Loves languages, sophistocation
Hates mess, stereotypes
The linguist of the Cork's crew, Pinot probably knows a million languages, but I really only need him for French (and, less vitally, the languages of Tsyllaes), because thinking in French is so very different to English. Pinot is a distinguished gentleman, rarely seen in anything but a suit and never with a hair out of place. He tends to disdain the rest of the crew, and often assumes the position of captain if Cab Sav isn't around, whether she's asked him to or not. In any case, he's so slick with his tongue that it's nigh on impossible for anyone to argue with him. Pinot is a perfectionist, especially when it comes to grammar and spelling. He'll not only point out errors in others' speech, but make sure they understand the error so they won't do it again. At least, not to Pinot's face.

Chardonnay

Charge editing
Colour yellow
Accessory scarves
Loves dead things
Hates everything else
Reference buttery white
As the editing muse, Chardonnay critisises everything, including herself. Her first reaction upon seeing anything is to search for its faults, and if this is a person, she won't hold back from telling them every little thing that could do with improvement. She always wears a scarf to cover her mouth, but since it's guaranteed to be turned down in a scowl, we figure we're not missing much. She often adorns herself with macabre trinkets in the form of small skulls, bones and dead animals, either real or fake. Chardonnay hates to be around people, partly because she hates seeing their faults, partly because she knows they'll also pick out hers.

Chenin Blanc

Charge music
Colour silver
Accessory skirts
Loves singing, teasing
Hates darkness, being alone
Reference full-bodied fruit
Chenin is actually the muse form of my iPod. iTunes requires that you name the iPod, and, since I most often listen to music when I'm writing or drawing, I thought I'd continue on the naming conventions of my muses and name it after a wine, and so Chenin Blanc was born. As a silver iPod, Chenin loves to sing, dance and wear anything spangly and silvery, typically inspired by one of the artists on my playlist. He has no inhibitions and doesn't at all mind making an idiot of himself, because he loves to see the people around him smiling and laughing, be it with him or at him. Chenin loves to be around people so much that he gets quite scared if left alone or in silence.

Grenache Shiraz Mourvèdre

Charge graphic design
Colour black
Accessory gloves
Loves negative space, textures
Hates clutter, poor design
Grenache is the picture of elegance and sophistocation. She is very observant while still remaining aloof; she knows everything that's going on around her and can mark a person's character in a moment. She's very adaptable and knows how to present herself to make herself everyone's friend and confidant, so much that nobody can quite pick her outside of her own design. Poor design personally offends her, to the point where she will actively take a pencil to magazines or rearrange another's desk space. Grenache knows what's best and, while she will listen to other suggestions, she'll take those suggestions and improve them in her own way as though she came up with them.