Let’s talk about the absolute basics in deduction. Seems like there’s a lot of people that misunderstand them, even other deductionists. This post is made to correct some of these misunderstandings.
What do we deductionists do? We gather information and make conclusions about that information. The premise is simple. Is it simple to get to the same level as Sherlock? No. Do I know of someone that is on the same level as Sherlock? No, and I know quite a few deductionists. But here’s the big reason why I don’t know of anyone at the same level as Sherlock, it’s not that Sherlock is fictional, it’s because of perfect situations that Sherlock is in. These happen, but not as often as Sherlock finds himself in them.
The way with OCC:
First of all, you should try and remember OCC. This the order in which you as a deductionist should operate.
Observation – Here you observe the place or person you are deducing. There are things to look for if you have the knowledge, some says you should observe everything, and sure, you should do that in a perfect world but you won’t be able to use everything you observe so that will only waste your time when you get into higher ranks of deduction. And if you want to know what to observe than all you need to do is practice.
Conclusion – The second step is to come to a conclusion from what you have observed. This is the deduction, we will talk more about this later on in this text. This will require both logic and knowledge. If you lack in one of these then you’ll need to train that.
Confirmation – Now this is something most deductionist don’t do because they are scared of failing. If you don’t confirm if you are right you’ll hinder your own progress extremely. If you can confirm, always try to.
Now, most break down deduction into two parts, logic and knowledge. I think that the knowledge part needs to be split into two parts. Absolute knowledge and statistical knowledge. This is important, I’ll try and explain why but first you need to know about the three kinds of deduction.
This reasoning is used when you have one or more statements that you combine to reach a logical conclusion.
The reasoning is that if the statements are true and clear the conclusion must be true.
An example of deductive reasoning:
Pink is not a natural hair colour.
Emily has pink hair.
Someone/something has dyed Emily’s hair pink.
This is deduction in which you use absolute knowledge to make a deduction. And if you truly use absolute knowledge then the conclusion will be correct.
In inductive reasoning, you come to a conclusion that’s probable. The statements are viewed as strong evidence for your conclusion.
An example of inductive reasoning:
There are marbles in this bag.
All 8 out of 10 marbles I have seen from this bag are black.
All marbles from this bag are black.
This doesn’t tell you if the conclusion is true or not but thanks to the strong evidence of the statements you’re presented with, it’s probable that the conclusion is true. This is statistical knowledge and will be true most of the time.
In abductive reasoning, you have the statements and from that, you make an educated guess about what the conclusion might be. This reasoning is looking for the best explanation.
An example of abductive reasoning:
The grass is wet.
The grass is usually dry.
It has rained.
This is something we deductionists often do. We always look for the best explanation based on the evidence we are provided. This, if done correctly, will also most often be true. This will often be your own conducted statistical knowledge.
The reason why “knowledge” should be split into “absolute knowledge” and “statistical knowledge” is that if you have the logic you’ll never be wrong with absolute knowledge, but with statistical knowledge, you can still be wrong. Some tell you that logic is more important than knowledge and vice versa. This couldn’t be more wrong. Logic and knowledge are equally important. Those who don’t agree probably don’t know that much about the category they are dismissing. Logic and knowledge should work together alongside each other.
But if you want the “WOW effect” one of these triumphs over the other. If you do a deduction via logic people can see your train of thought quite easily, especially if you explain it. If you do deduction via knowledge then people won’t be able to follow your train of thought without that specific knowledge. And more people have a good logical mind than specific knowledge about everything. Something magicians have as a catchphrase nowadays are “People aren’t stupid” and that is true. If you, the reader of this thinks that most people are stupid then you need to come out of that bubble of yours.
Some other things.
So can you yourself measure how good you are at deduction? No, not really. You’ll always be biased towards yourself. So if you like yourself, you’ll probably think that you are better at deduction than you really are. If you think the worst of yourself then you’ll probably think you are worse than you really are. Then we have the “Dunning–Kruger effect”, most of you will probably, in the beginning, think that you are better at deduction than you really are, because of the Dunning-Kruger effect. It predicts that beginners rate themselves to be better than they really are while experts rate themselves to be worse than they really are. So no you can’t measure your skill level yourself.
This point I’ll make now is kind of connected to the previous one. Don’t assume you are right. That would be really stupid. If you assume you are right, you’ll fall for confirmation bias. This is when you look for things that would prove what you believe to be true, and miss things that disprove your theory. One more reason this is bad, I know of deductionists that don’t want to accept that they’re wrong, even if it’s confirmed. They think the one that tells them they’re wrong are lying. Extremely bad.
Your knowledge about deduction will improve. In the beginning, before you start deduction you’ll probably not know about it at all, you’ll have an unconscious ignorance towards it. When you start reading about it, you’ll probably understand that you don’t know much about it. So you’ll have a conscious ignorance towards it. After trying it out and really learning you’ll start noticing that you can deduce some things, you’ll have and conscious knowledge towards deduction. When you’ve become an expert to master you’ll make deductions without thinking that much, you’ll have an unconscious knowledge about deduction.
So, how do you get better in deduction? Practice, it might sound cliché but it’s true. But however, you can shorten the time quite much, if you confirm your deductions. The second C in OCC is extremely important. If you don’t know what you are doing wrong then you can’t improve. You won’t get better just from reading this. So go out there and make deductions and most importantly confirm your deductions.
If you want me to write a post about confirming your deductions about people without the fear to fail (because if you fail they won’t know that you’ve failed) then write to me about that. A lot of people seem to be afraid of saying their deductions out loud.
Okay, so I’ve had this idea running around my head for ages: What if Remus accidentally drank a Love Potion? And I finally wrote it, so enjoy!
- The Marauders were sat down in their usual seats in the Great Hall on a normal, boring Tuesday morning.
- James was far too awake for breakfast.
- He was drinking his orange juice and talking about the wonderful day they were going to have ahead.
- Peter was sat across from him.
- He was half a sleep trying to rub the sleep out of his eye’s and had at least three coffees around him.
- Remus was sat on James’ right.
- He leaning his head into his hand, reading the newspaper and idling eating a sausage with his fingers.
- Lily was sat on Remus’ left.
- She was eating her cereal and pointing out interesting thing’s in the paper to him.
- Sirius was sat across from Remus.
- He was doing is best to pretend he wasn’t watching him eat the sausage by over stirring a cup of tea for himself.
- Then Mandy Moores, an air headed Hufflepuff, plopped herself down next to Sirius, disturbing the status quo.
- She started swirled her mousy brown hair around her index finger with a little giggle.
- She wore bright red lipstick, her hair was long and curly - most likely from the amount she twisted it with her fingers - she had bright green eyes and perfectly white, straight teeth.
- She was the innocent girl next door that most guy would love to be with.
- All but Sirius who had been trying to avoid her for months.
- “Good morning, Siri!” She sang making Sirius visibly wince.
- “It’s Sirius, not Siri …” He deadpanned.
- Merlin, he hated that name.
- “Oh,” She giggled uncomfortably, “I’m sorry, Sirius. I didn’t mean to offend. I was just - oh! Silly me.” She faked stumbling over into him so he would catch her.
- Which he did, reluctantly. Damn reflexes.
- “Oh, my. What a klutz!” She laughed heartily and quickly shoved something into her bag.
- “Did you want something, or …?” Sirius pushed her slightly so she wasn’t leaning on him anymore.
- “Oh! I was just wondering, do you want to be my partner in DADA today?”
- “Erm,” He rubbed the back of his neck awkwardly to try and come up with an excuse not to when his eyes landed on Remus.
- “I’m actually Remus’ partner today, right Moony?”
- “Huh?” He jumped at the distraction from his newspaper, and choked on the sausage he was eating.
- He went red in the face, coughing violently and made a grabby hand for someone to pass him a drink, which Sirius did straight away.
- His own drink.
- “Noo!” Mandy shouted, but Remus had already down the drink.
- “What are you shouting no at?” Sirius furrowed his eyebrows to her.
- “Damn it. I didn’t want him to fall in love with me.” She huffed and crossed her arms annoyed.
- Sirius turned back to Remus to see him looking like his usual self, however instead of leaning on his hand and reading the newspaper, he was in fact staring directly at Sirius.
- “Are you okay, Moons?” He asked concerned.
- “Oh yes. Thank you, Padfoot.” He grinned in a love sick way. “You’re so kind to ask. I love how caring you are”
- “What?” Mandy asked with a completely puzzled face, but she quickly shook her head and turned back to Sirius.
- “Erm, so anyway, Siri, as I was saying before someone decided to choke …” She placed her hand on his shoulder.
- Then felt an extremely hard kick to her shin.
- “Ahh!” she shrieked catching the attention of James, Peter and Lily.
- Remus was positively furious.
- “Don’t. Touch. Sirius. Again.” He growled. “And I believe he told you not to call him Siri. He hates that name. Only someone who truly cares about him would know that.”
- Mandy stared at him with wide eyes and an open mouth.
- “Remus, are you alright?” Lily asked.
- “But … I don’t understand, I did the potion right …” Mandy mumbled under her breath, but Sirius heard it.
- “What potion?” He snapped at her.
- She jumped at the sudden anger in his voice.
- She looked frightened and a little timid.
- “I … erm …” She sheepishly looked around to try and find an escape.
- “What. Potion?!” Sirius glared at her, then turned to see Remus smiling adoringly at him, then his eyes fell onto the cup of tea that he had given Remus.
- It dawned on him.
- “You slipped him a love potion?!” He yelled, jumping to his feet.
- James whipped his head from Sirius to Remus with wide, concerned eyes.
- Lily quickly grabbed the cup and sniffed it.
- “It’s definitely been laced with a love potion. Moore, what the hell? This is illegal!” Lily turned on the girl.
- James started waving his hand in front of Remus’ eyes to try and get his attention but nothing was working.
- His eyes didn’t leave Sirius.
- Peter was still half asleep and was struggling to follow anything that was currently happening.
- “Ew, no! I didn’t try to give Lupin a love potion! I … I was trying to give you one.”
- “You tried to drug me?!” He shouted, catching the attention of most people in the surrounding area.
- She nodded sheepishly.
- “Well, if she did that, then why hasn’t it made him be in love with Moore?” Peter asked, trying to piece together what the hell was happening.
- “I would never be in love with someone like her.” Remus snapped making Mandy scoff. “Besides, I’m already in love!”
- “And who is it you’re in love with, Remus?” Lily child him.
- “Why, with Sirius, of course!” He sighed happily, staring back at Sirius.
- He physically paled and dropped back down into his seat.
- He turned to share a look with James who understood exactly what it meant.
- This is something Sirius had wanted for a long time, but not like this.
- Not against Remus’ will.
- “How could this have happened?” Lily pondered out loud.
- “I don’t know, I did the potion correctly! I used Sirius’ hair and everything!”
- Lily and James groaned and face palmed themselves.
- “You really are an air headed idiot, Moores. You’re not supposed to use their hair, you’re supposed to use your own! No wonder Remus thinks he’s in love with Sirius,” James heavily sighed.
- Then Remus hit James up around the head.
- “Ouch! What the hell, Moony?”
- “This isn’t some potion, James! I love Sirius! I always have!” He cried.
- “Yeah, yeah, you love him, you love him. Merlin, you didn’t need to hit me that hard.” He rubbed his sore head.
- “But, you have to be wrong!” Mandy cried, “Severus helped me make this, he said it had to be Sirius’ hair!”
- “Severus told you that?” Lily rounded on her, then turned to face the Slytherin table to seem them all sniggering.
- “Godric, he really is an arsehole these days.” She tutted and flipped her hair over her shoulder.
- Sirius still hadn’t spoken.
- He was just staring like a deer caught in the headlights at Remus, who was staring back with wonder.
- “We’re going to have to take him to Madam Pomfrey.” He blankly stated.
- “No! You can’t! I’ll get into so much trouble!” Mandy whined.
- “Good! You should get expelled for what you’ve done!” Lily roared, angrily.
- “Come on, Remus,” she grabbed his arm and pulled him to his feet. “You too, Sirius.”
- Sirius with wide eyes automatically got up and followed Lily, not aware of his surroundings.
- That was until they made it to the corridor and he felt someone take ahold of his hand.
- He stared down to see fingers lace with his own and a hand which fit perfectly there.
- Looking back up, he saw Remus smiling at him sweetly.
- Then he gently leaned in and kissed his cheek.
- “Why do you look so sad, Pads?” He asked, seeming genuinely upset. “Is it me? Did I upset you?”
- “I … No! No, Moons. You didn’t upset me.” He smiled sheepishly.
- “It was that stupid Moore trying to drug me, but accidentally drugging you. I’m so sorry, it’s my fault for giving you that drink. I can’t believe someone would do that.”
- Remus pulled him in for a tight hug.
- “Nothing is your fault, Padfoot. And I promise, no one will ever attempt to hurt you again, because no-one will ever get close enough to hurt the person I love.” He whispered into his ear, and for a moment Sirius believed it and melted into the hug.
- Hesitantly, he pulled out of Remus’ embrace with a sad smile.
- “Come on, Moons, let’s get to Pomfrey.”
- He took ahold of Remus’ hand, allowing himself a few moments of joy, and pulled him toward the stairs.
- Lily silently watched the exchange and felt her heart sink and her eyes well up.
- She knew how much Sirius was head over heels for Remus, and watching him have a taste of what he could have but doesn’t was just heart breaking.
- James and Peter followed them to the hall to see Sirius and Remus halfway up the first flight of stairs and Lily stood there watching them with tears on her cheeks.
- “Lils, are you okay?” James asked with concern.
- She nodded and quickly wiped her eyes with a breathy chuckle.
- “Yeah, yes, I’m … I’m fine. It’s, it’s silly. Come on, lets get them to the hospital wing.” She whispered and followed them up the stairs.
- “Absolutely despicable behaviour,” Pomfrey muttered to herself as she mixed the potion together.
- “Consent needs to be taught properly to the students if they can willy nilly make love potions and spike each other.” She threw the next lot of ingredients into the caldron.
- “I’ve told Horace to stop teaching students how to make Love Potions, but Noooo, Poppy, the children wouldn’t dare to use it on one another. Pfft. Imbecile. You can be certain Professor Dumbledore will be hearing about this”
- She slammed down the stirring rod and poured the potion into a small vial.
- She turned back to where the Marauders and Lily were sat and walked over to them.
- “Okay, here we go Remus. Just drink this potion for me, there’s a dear.” Pomfrey smiled gently to her favourite patient.
- But he turned his head away from her and to face Sirius.
- “No. I don’t want to.” He sounded like a small child.
- “Come on, Moons.” James begged, taking the potion out of Pomfrey’s hand and physically turned his head back to him, which Remus automatically turned back to Sirius.
- “Why can’t you just go away and let me and Sirius be alone.” He whined and moved off of the bed he was sat on and onto the one Sirius was sitting on.
- He plopped down next to him and nuzzled his nose into his neck.
- Sirius stiffened.
- “If you take the drink, Remus, then you and Sirius can be alone all you want, okay?” Lily gave him a lopsided smile and took the potion from James and held it out to him.
- “It’s okay, guys.” Sirius whispered. “Go to class, I’ll stay with Remus and get him to drink it.”
- “Are you sure, Pads? What if he jumps you?” Peter asked earning a nudge in the ribs from James.
- “He’s not going to jump me, Wormy,” he snapped.
- “It’s Moons.” He whispered the last part looking down at Remus leaning on his shoulder, staring up at him with love.
- “Give us the potion and go.” He sighed.
- Lily passed it over and placed her hand on Sirius’ cheek with a small smile, then walked out with Peter.
- James patted his shoulder on his way out.
- “Good luck, mate.”
- “I’ll give you two some privacy.” Pomfrey, who knew the love Sirius shared for Remus, smiled and walked to the opposite side of the ward.
- Sirius shifted and push Remus up into a sitting position and twisted his body to him.
- “Come on, Moons, please drink this for me.” He held the potion out toward him.
- Remus wrapped his hand around the vial and over Sirius’ hand.
- “On one condition.”
- “What’s that?” Sirius bit his lip.
- “Will you kiss me?” He whispered and lent forward, but Sirius quickly pulled back.
- “Moony. Merlin, you don’t know how much I want to. It’s just, I can’t. Not like this.” He wimped.
- “Do you not love me?” Remus physically sunk in his seat as tears spilt over his eyes.
- “Of course I do! Oh, Remus,” Sirius placed his free hand onto his cheek and caught the tears there. “I do love you, so much.” He whispered.
- “Then why won’t you kiss me?” He whispered back.
- “Because,” his hand ran through Remus’ curly locks making both of their breaths hitch slightly, “I want to kiss you, not under-a-love-potion you. I want it to be real.”
- “It’s not the potion!” He whined but Sirius just let out a breathy laugh.
- “Of course, Moons. So, please prove that to me by drinking this. And if it isn’t the potion, then you can kiss me.”
- “Do you promise?” Remus asked.
- Sirius couldn’t trust his voice, so he nodded instead.
- Remus brought the vial with both his and Sirius’ hand on it to his lips and down it in one.
- Then threw it down onto the floor letting it smash, and leant in to kiss Sirius.
- But stopped short with wide eyes and pulled back abruptly.
- Sirius felt his heart sink.
- He moved to stand up, but Remus grabbed his hand to stop him.
- He turned to stare at Remus with shocked expression.
- Remus confusion changed into a small smile.
- He placed his free hand onto the side of Sirius’ neck and guided him into a kiss.
- Sirius felt his cheeks heat as he pressed his lips hard against Remus’ to feel if this was real.
- Remus swiped his tongue across the parting of Sirius’ lips and licked his way into Sirius mouth.
- Sirius moaned around the tongue and allowed his to own to toy with it.
- Then he came back to himself and pulled away to catch his breath.
- “Please … please tell me that the potion worked, Remus? You’re not under a love potion right now, are you?” He rushed breathlessly and searched his eyes.
- Remus grinned and shook his head with a chuckle.
- “I’m not under a potion, Sirius. I’ve been dying to do that for so long.”
- “Oh thank god!” He cheered, and smacked his lips back to Remus’ with a giggled and pushed him down onto the bed.
- “MR BLACK! MR LUPIN! THIS IS A HOSPITAL WING! CEASE THIS INAPPROPRIATE BEHAVIOUR!” Pomfrey yelled and stormed over to the boys.
- They sheepishly pulled away, both sporting a bright blush and apologised quietly.
- She sighed and shook her head.
- “Remus, I just need to do a test to see if the love potion has definitely left your system.” She instructed and pulled out her wand.
- Sirius stilled.
- “Wait, there’s a chance it’s not fully gone?!” Sirius turned to Remus with worry in his eyes.
- Godric, what if it wasn’t Remus he was kissing?
- What if he had taken advantage of him?
- He felt physically sick at the thought.
- Pomfrey waved her wand over Remus, but before she could finish the spell, Remus reached over and grabbed Sirius’ hands.
- “Go Hogsmeade with me this weekend? On a real date?” He asked.
- Sirius just nodded and waited for the results.
- “Hmm,” she pursed her lips, “it’s still slightly in your system …”
- Sirius heard white noise after that and dropped Remus’ hand.
- He got off the bed and ran out of the hospital wing.
- He kept running.
- He had no idea where he was going, or why his cheeks were so wet.
- But he had to get away.
- Remus tried to talk to Sirius multiple times during the week, but Sirius always managed to avoid him.
- He felt sick at what had happened and he would not subject Remus to seeing him, the boy who took advantage of him, again.
- James allowed him to sneak into his bed at night to cry over what had happened that horrible day.
- Only he, Sirius and Remus (and to some extent Pomfrey) knew what happened in the hospital wing.
- Saturday came around quickly.
- Sirius made the decision to stay in the dorm on his own to wallow in his self pity.
- He heard his friends leave the room, knowing full well he didn’t want to come.
- He decided after five minutes of staring at the ceiling to go for a shower, so he pulled his curtain back to get up.
- However, when he opened the curtain, Remus was stood there wearing a large coat and a scarf smiling at Sirius.
- “Are you not ready yet? Merlin, that’s not a good start to a date.” He grinned.
- Sirius furrowed his eyebrows.
- “What are you talking about?”
- “You. Me. Hogsmeade. Date. Remember?” He chuckled and sat down next to a confused Sirius.
- “N…no? You weren’t … you when you asked.” He shook his head confused. “You were under a love potion.”
- “Oh, silly, conclusion-jumping Padfoot.” He rolled his eyes playfully and placed his hand on his neck - just like that day.
- Sirius felt his eyes flutter shut painfully at the memory.
- “If you stayed and listened to what Pomfrey said, you would of heard that the slight trace wasn’t strong enough to bring on any un-warrent feelings.”
- Sirius opened his eyes and looked even more puzzled than before.
- He tilted his head like a confused dog making Remus feel even more affection for him.
- “Meaning,” he continued, “that when I asked you on a date, and when we … when we kissed, I was me. I promise you.” He softly smiled.
- It took Sirius a second for it to dawn on him what this meant.
- Then he felt the corners of his lips tug up into a large smile.
- “Do you mean…?”
- “That I am actually in love with you, want to kiss you, and want to go on a date with you? Yes, Pads. That’s what I mean.” He chuckled.
- Sirius dove off from his seat and into Remus’ lap, wrapping his legs around his waist, arms around his neck and clung to him like a koala bear.
- Remus fell backwards with a bark of a laugh as Sirius lifted up to plant kisses all over his face.
- “Do,” kiss to his cheek, “you,” kiss to his temple, “mean,” kiss to his nose, “it?”
- Remus couldn’t help the lovely giggle that bubbled out of him.
- “Every word, Pads.” He grinned.
- “I don’t want to go to Hogsmeade.” Sirius said sternly, staring down into his eyes.
- Remus’ laughter suddenly stopped as he stared back up.
- “Oh. Oh, sorry I … Gods, I feel stupid to assume …” He moved to sit up, but Sirius dead weighted on him to keep him there.
- “Because I was us to stay here, in this bed, and make out until we feel our lips are going to fall off. Because now I have you, Moony, I’m never letting you go.”
- “Oh, thank Godric.” Remus sighed with relief and rolled them over with a yelp from Sirius so he was on top.
- “I believe I can comply with your demands.” He cheekily smirked. “May I kiss you?”
- He nudged his nose playfully against Sirius’ who grinned back with a nod.
- Then snogged Sirius into the mattress.
CONSENT IS SO IMPORTANT, CONSENT IS SEXY, ALWAYS HAVE CONSENT!