Breathing heavily, but slowly, Roger lent against the railing to steady his nerves and gain some control over his swaying sense of balance. It was alright for Neil, who was grinning his head off and yabbering ten to the dozen already. His bare descent count numbered over three hundred, but for Roger this was his first bare descent in excess of 350 feet without a safety net.
Looking back up the granite encased tower made him feel queasy and the parapet sway beneath his feet. He knew he was on firm ground, but that did not help him control his emotions – or his bodily functions, as the small explosions of air attested. He draped his elbow along the edge and spread-eagled his boots just that little further, to assuage the intense feeling of inadequacy threatening to overwhelm him.
His chest rattled as he inhaled deeply, preparing for the imminent repeat.