Sweat from a morning full of practices trickled down the sides of his face. His arms hurt, muscles fighting the urge to let go and let his limbs collapse limp at his sides. Instead he kept going, pushing through the burn as he practiced swinging and lunging with the large sword in his hands. Even with such an untrained master Excalibur was a sight to be seen. It flashed blindingly in the barest of lights, it's edges sharp enough to cleave a man's head from his shoulders in a single stroke. It required no sharpening, didn't rust or age, and every time Arthur held it he felt power humming inside of it. A great sword fit for a King, and he spent more time than he could count trying to live up to it. It wasn't a question of whether or not he believed he'd live up to the legend, he believed (with almost childish certainty) that he would one day be exactly what the sword needed him to be. His problem was finding the time to actually work at getting there.
It had been almost two whole months since he'd found time to cross over. Between school and work he'd put his responsibilities to the resistance and himself aside. Something he'd swore he'd never do. It didn't help that he didn't have to worry about the portal's little side effect. He'd learned over time that something about the sword made it so he'd never forget, even when he didn't cross for months at a time. It was both a relief and a hassle. It took away that sense of urgency he'd had in the beginning. When running through the portal had been the only surefire way to make sure he never forgot about his home, or who he was.
When he'd finally sat down and told himself to take the day off for a trip through the portal, the first thing he'd done was dive into training. He needed to make up for what he'd missed, though he knew one day wasn't going to outweigh what could have been weeks of learning.
He knew from watching the better fighters that his hold on the sword still wasn't strong enough. A well placed strike and he'd drop it. He also left himself open far too often, but when you sparred mostly with fighting dummies it was hard to get an accurate read on how best to move so that others couldn't find your weaknesses. Overall most of his problems stemmed from being a somewhat awkward eighteen year old, in good shape, but still not completely grown out of the gangling long-legged youth he'd been as a child.
Yes he'd grown, but on this side he was still young, still growing and it didn't help that this body moved differently from the one on the other side. It was hard enough learning to function with one body, never mind two.
Panting, Arthur lifted an arm to rub the sweat from his brow. When he'd crossed it had been cold out, the ground covered in steadily melting snow, but the workout he'd given himself had effectively cancelled out most of it. He felt hot almost suffocated in the layers he still wore, as he moved to the log where he'd left a water bottle half buried in slush. Collapsing onto the makeshift bench he pulled out his bottle and took a long gulp, wincing at the coldness of the water. The arm still holding his sword planted it securely into the ground.
"Not bad, could have been better..." His voice carried in the silence of the training part of camp. Winter seemed to be having some trouble letting go, and he considered crossing back to the heat of San Francisco. Or finding a campfire back at the camp, his eyes straying towards the noises he could hear bustling away. Semi-distant, yet comforting.