there might still be a chance for sizemore and maggie popping up out of the ground with scrolls to heal them both while parson talks to Tre-faboo.
This is where my money's going. More plot, more narrative, and most importantly like thirty more pages before this battle reaches anything that could even remotely be called a conclusion.
I just started reading a book by that guy and am becoming attached to some of the characters... should I be concerned?
Yes. Especially if your chosen characters show any signs of success or happiness. To borrow the TvTrope nomenclature, he's big on Rape The Puppy moments.
I think that what the text is getting at is that flying down close to the ground and jumping off your mount does not significantly change the odds.
I agree, at least regarding the odds for insta-croaking, which is probably why Parson didn't order them to fly as low as they could first. That still doesn't mean we can plug numbers in. "Essentially random" in no way implies "all outcomes have equal probability," it means "no matter what, falling can still kill you with high enough odds that you don't want to chance it routinely." In that klog entry, Parson was working out the odds. He knows what they are, in this situation. But he did not tell us. We do not know them.
So from complaining that others assume too much, you now say that I'm assuming too little?
Uh, no. "Glossing over assumptions" should be read as "making some real whoppers, but pretending they don't matter." To wit, you're still forced to just make shit up for h_c and h_i, which means everything downstream is equally meaningless. I think the best part is your conclusion:
you need to remember that h_s and h_i are numbers that are between 0 and 1, so you must intersect the area defined before with the square between (0,0) and (1, 1).
...meaning Wanda has somewhere between a 0% and 100% chance to survive. Inclusive. Way to go, Mandelbrot.