Did I mention that the hero of Courting Cassandry, Gerolt de Warrenne, plays a part in this story when he was a young man? Here are a few paragraphs of him getting into mischief with his friend, Samson, in medieval Venice.
Caution dissipated as Gerolt found the first handholds and pulled himself up. He expected the path to be easier, given Samson’s dexterity, but the bricks were not always where Gerolt thought they should be. Perhaps because his limbs were so much longer than Samson’s, he kept misjudging their placement. Di Luzio had not been much above Samson’s height, so the distance between the bricks had undoubtedly been chosen for the natural length of his body.
Gerolt tried to think “shorter”, but soon he felt a wild giddiness rushing through his brain. It’s the wine, he thought, hitting me at last. He glanced down, startled for a moment to see how far below him lay the shadows of the garden. He had stood on the soaring parapets of his father’s castle and looked out over land and people grown curiously small, but he had never hung in the air like this, so exposed, so helpless should his grip slip. Would he plummet into a bramble bush or would he hit the hard earth at the bottom of those shadows? Would the fall bruise, or had he climbed high enough to break a few bones? Or my back? Or my neck?
He bit off a euphoric laugh. It is the wine. It has made a fool out of you. Yet as he scrambled for the next brick and the next, he thought he had never felt so blazingly alive as he did scaling this gloriously precarious wall.