Leiraya crossed her arms and looked sourly at Kylan. "You have no heart."
"No heart? I'm just using my head." He shrugged. "Just because you don't feel like thinking this through logically…"
"And what's logic, anyway? As far as I can see, logic only directs you from one emotion to the next."
Kylan looked at her slightly askance. "And this is significant why?"
"Your so-called 'logical' thinking functions only as a bridge between emotions- which, by the way, are what you're always giving me a hard time about."
He frowned. "And how do you reach that conclusion?"
"Okay- so Master Gormain says something, oh I don't know… that the only way you can complete your training is to get an orange mohawk, else the Council will never approve your Knighthood. This assertion makes you want to slap her silly."
"Well, that would be a slap-worthy comment, but I'd never slap a Master. Nobody in his right mind would."
"And why is that?"
"Because she'd kill me. You don't go around slapping Masters."
Leiraya grinned. "Ah, but you see that it's because you desire to avoid being killed that causes you to not slap her. There's nothing intrinsically built into the definition of slapping her that gives you a reason to re-think your actions. It's the causes and effects that dominate your reasoning."
Kylan looked annoyed. "Now, wait a minute. You make it sound as though logic doesn't matter. That we just have to sort through dueling emotions."
"Can you show me otherwise?"
He had to think about it for a moment before responding. "Okay- so say she does tell me I need an orange mohawk, and I decide I don't actually care that she would kill me if I slapped her."
"But then I have to consider the consequences. And say, among these consequences is the fact that, should I slap her, the probability of her making me get the orange mohawk then and there just to spite me goes up by 70."
"You still stop yourself because you don't want the mohawk."
"But were it not for logical and mathematical reasoning, I never would have come to that conclusion- your ethical philosopher says that 'reason is, and ought only to be, the slave of the passions.' If anything, it's the other way around!"
"You figure that, eh?"
"Yes! The fact that I didn't desire the 70 increase in mohawk probability is a direct result of the reasoning that such an increase would occur. No reason, no probability, no resultant emotional response. Logic has to guide you if you're going to make any sort of reasonable response."
"But," she countered, "it's still a conflict of desires, when it comes right down to it."
"Okay," Kylan responded, "I'll give you that. But when you say that reason is the slave to emotion, that would imply that emotion is guiding my logic, which it's not. When you're caught in the midst of a passion, the last thing you want to think of is something that would change your mind. Were reason truly a slave to passion, we would never allow ourselves to think about things such as mohawk probability for too long, since it would quash the immediate desire for slapping. If you don't think about it, you're guaranteed that no self-objections will come up."
"But the reason still isn't-"
"You're not going to get there if you don't reason about it. Important as the emotions are for making decisions, they're nothing but islands in the sea of the mind without the Ferry of Logic to shuttle between them."
"Did you just say 'ferry of logic?'"
"Yes. It's a new term that I made up today. And don't you go doing your word-crossing thing and invent some sort of Logic Fairy to taunt me with."
"I wasn't even thinking that, but now that you mention it…"
Kylan rolled his eyes in exasperation. "The point is, any two contradictory points remain unconnected until something bothers to draw a line between them. In this case, logic serves a very important function."
She stopped to consider this, and after a few moments, nodded. "Okay, I'll buy that. Looks like we have a compromise, for once."
"That may be a first."
Leiraya grinned. "Must be the work of the Logic Fairy."
"Do you really have to bring that up?"
"Bring it up? You invented her in the first place. Now, tell me, does the Logic Fairy wear a little dress and carry a wand?"
Smiling ruefully, Kylan could only shake his head. Strange friendships, indeed. He never would have guessed he'd get along with someone whose views opposed his own so greatly, but he'd long since decided that he wouldn't have it any other way.