Ruby Eye Shabranigdo is the overarching villain of the Slayers Series. He is the God of Evil, the King of Darkness, the creator of demons and monsters and to cut a long story short, the direct or indirect cause of everything bad in the Slayers World. Since he was divided into seven fragments and put into slumber by his archenemy the Dragon God Ceifeed, every demon seeks to awake him or destroy the world on his behalf.
Creation and Separation
At the beginning was the Sea of Chaos and its personification, the genderless Lord of Nightmares. (Referred to as a she in spite of her masculine title) Through her dreams, the Lord of Nightmares created four different Worlds with a Demon God as the embodiment of Evil, and a Dragon God as the embodiment of Good, in each one of them.
In the Slayers World, the Demon God, Ruby Eye Shabranigdo battled the Dragon God, Flare Dragon Ceifeed during many millennia. At some point around five thousand years before the beginning of the series, Shabranigdo created five Demon Lords to assist him:
- Hellmaster Fibrizo, Demon Lord of Death and the Souls of the Departed
- Supreme King Dynast Grausherra, Demon Lord of Ice and War
- Chaos Dragon Garv, Demon Lord of Fire and the Evil Dragons
- Greater Beast Zelas Metallium, Demon Lady of Monsters and the Evil Beasts
- Sea Queen Deep Sea Dolphin, Demon Lady of Sea and Water
Shortly after, the two deities defeated one another, Ceifeed having his body destroyed and his spirit scattered everywhere in the world, and Shabranigdo being divided in seven fragments which were sealed into human souls.
The Demon Lords established themselves in the world and created subordinates; each Demon Lord spawning two high-ranking demons to serve them, one Priest and one General, except Zelas who created one demon to fulfill both roles: a demon named Xellos who is as such the strongest high-ranking demon below the Demon Lords themselves.
Each fragment of Ruby Eye Shabranigdo appears in the anime as a building-sized demon with glowing red eyes, enormous fangs and many tentacles and appendages protruding.
Yet, glimpses of his complete forms during the beginning of times show a much bigger and far more horrifying being, evoking a gigantic amalgamation of demonic body parts that seems covered in eyes and spikes, with an even more demonic version of his fragment's faces. In the original books, his aspect is stated to be much more alien and hardly even comprehensible, and his awakening induces awful, inhumane mutations on his host when he takes over.
Being the God of Evil of his world, Shabranigdo (and the demons he created) feeds of negative emotions like fear, disgust, envy or hatred, which fuels his demonic powers. He is unspeakably cruel, ruthless, hateful, violent, collected, cold, callous and uncaring, but he does respect his foes who earn it and rewards his servants for their good services. His ultimate goal is to destroy the world and everything in it, so that the demon kind could dwell in the Sea of Chaos: the source of all creation.
In the Slayers world, Magic works by drawing power from the gods, the divine beings and the world itself. Given that Black Magic draws power from the demon kind, the most powerful Black Magic spells draw power from none other than Shabraganigdo himself, the most powerful of all demons. These spells are the Drag Slave (originally called the Dragon Slayer, a red energy blast which can blow up an entire town) and the Ruby Eye Blade. A huge blade of red energy able to cut through everything, wielded like an actual sword.
Role in the Slayers series
During the entire series, three fragments of Shabranigdo have been awoken and defeated:
Over a thousand years before the series, Hellmaster Fibrizo discovered a fragment of his master sealed within the soul of the great archmage Lei Magnus; the inventor of the Drag Slave spell. He then staged a worldwide war between several human nations and used the horrors it caused to fuel Lei Magnus' despair, sadness and negative feelings, thus awaking the fragment of the Demon God which took over his body and mind, and became the Demon King of the North.
Lei Magnus-Shabranigdo took command of the demon armies and started a worldwide war against the Dragon Lords, servants of Ceifeed, and their troops. This started the dreadful War of the Monster's Fall, the worst conflict the world ever knew, which is considered as a turning point in the Slayers history.
During this war countless of dragons, elves, humans, monsters, demons and other creatures were killed. The five Demon Lords managed to make the knowledge of Holy Magic (the most useful weapon against them) almost disappear from the world, by destroying many of Ceifeed's temples. Lei Magnus-Shabranigdo rewarded Xellos (Zelas Metallium's general-priest) for single-handedly slaughtering hundreds of golden dragons, giving him the Demon Bloods Talismans: four extremely potent magic amplifiers, which drew power from the four Demon Gods created by the Lord of Nightmares themselves.
After that, Lei Magnus-Shabranigdo and Chaos Dragon Garv fought against the forces of the Dragon Lord of Water Aqualord Ragradia, which were trapped by the Demon Barrier: a gigantic forcefield created by Fibrizo, Dynast, Zelas and Dolphin, separating a huge portion of the world from the other continents. This barrier cut the Slayers world in two and prevented the dragons trapped inside from casting Holy Magic, thus drastically weakening them.
Ragradia was killed, but before dying he managed to fuse Chaos Dragon Garv with a human body and to seal forever Lei Magnus-Shabranigdo into the everlasting ices of the Kataart Mountains. This ended the war, with no real winner.
Since then, Lei Magnus-Shabranigdo, who retains his consciousness and his incredible evil powers still commands the demon kind, but is unable to leave his frozen jail. A jail located inside the domain of the Demon Lord Dynast Grausherra who as such, may serve as his spokeperson.
Another fragment of Shabranigdo was sealed within the soul of Rezo the Red Priest, another powerful archmage. It inexplicably rendered Rezo helplessly blind, something that aggravated him to no end. The archmage thus devoted his whole life to the search for a cure at any cost.
This increasing frustration gave Shabranigdo more and more influence over his host, who became convinced that freeing the Demon God was the only way to gain sight. Still, Rezo did not know that the fragment of Shabranigdo was sealed inside him and he devised a plan to kill the Demon right after having his sight restored.
During the first episodes of the first season, (or the first novels, depending on the media) Rezo is trying to find the Philosopher's Stone, a magic amplifier which would enable Shabranigdo to fully awake. He ultimately succeeds and Shabranigdo awakes inside him, possessing his body and mind and assuming his demonic form. Rezo-Shabranigdo then covers the entire region under thick darkness and gathers every demon, monster, troll and werewolf around under his command. He plans to find every other part of himself, (Lei Magnus being the first) and to fuse back with them, before destroying the world at last.
Rezo-Shabranigdo confronts the series' heroes and offers them to make them immortal, wealthy and powerful if they swear loyalty to him, but they refuse and barely escape with their life. He almost destroys them in the ensuing battle; but the heroine, the sorceress Lina Inverse, manages to combine the power of the legendary Sword of Light with an incomplete Giga Slave (a destructive spell that draws power from the Lord of Nightmares herself) to destroy him. She succeeds because Rezo, whose soul was not completely consumed, manages to restrain the fragment of Shabranigdo from the inside, preventing the Demon from countering the attack.
In Slayers Evolution-R, the second half of the fourth season, it is revealed that Rezo has sealed his soul inside a magical artifact called the Hellmaster's Jar, and therefore survived the destruction of his body. Unfortunately, this means that the fragment of Shabranigdo survived as well, because its linked to the archmage's soul.
In these times, Rezo had sealed the entire population of the kingdom of Taforashia into magical crystals, to protect them from the Durum Sickness: a highly dangerous plague which threatened to wipe out the entire country. He also separated the soul of Pokota, (portmanteau of Posel Colba Taforashia) the prince of the kingdom, from his sick human body.
At the end, Rezo, inhabiting Pokota's human body, frees the Taforashian population and helps the heroes to cure everyone. Later Rezo fights against Xellos who seemingly wants to awake the dormant fragment of his god. Rezo (perhaps influenced by Shabranigdo) finally opens his eyes, which unleashes the Demon God once more. However, given that Rezo-Shabranigdo's body was destroyed during the first season, this second Rezo-Shabranigdo is nothing but an incomplete "ghost" of the Demon God.
Still, the "ghost" wields the overwhelming power of a complete Demon God and wreaks havoc in Taforashia: unleashing waves of pure strength, huge streams of lava, countless blazing rays, storms of lightning, thousands of demonic snake-like spirits and even nuclear explosions. Finaly, Pokota returns to his own body to restrain Shabranigdo, allowing Lina Inverse to destroy it once and for all with a nearly complete Giga Slave.
In the Manga adaptation of Slayers Evolution-R, Shabranigdo awakes as soon as Rezo enters Pokota's body. Here, Shabranigdo's "ghost" is nothing but a mindless remnant of the Demon God essence, still extremely powerful but much weaker than his anime counterpart. Once more, Pokota returns to his body. He and Rezo then manage to hold back Shabranigdo's "ghost" long enough for Lina to destroy it.
In the last Slayers Novels, Lina and her friend Gourry befriend a powerful sorcerer, swordsman and treasure hunter named Luke; along with his girlfriend, the sorceress Millina. The four manage to unveil a complicated scheme devised by the Demon Lord Dynast Grausherra, who has taken the place of the king of Dills and who is building a huge army of demons, half-demons and humans, in order to start a second War of the Monster's Fall.
They defeat (without killing) Dynast but the real goal of the Demon Lord was to awake the fragment of Shabranigdo he discovered within Luke's soul all along. To do so, he had the Head Priest of the holy city of Sellentia killed; and he manipulated the other High Priests so that they would plot against one another. The heroes later arrive in Sellentia and are dragged into the petty conflicts between the four High Priests, conflicts which cause the death of Millina. Luke overcome with hatred gets possessed by the fragment of Shabranigdo inside his soul and kills two of the High Priests before running away.
Luke, torn between his hatred for the world and his love for Millina is only partially possessed by Shabranigdo and he choses to let fate decide by challenging Lina and Gourry in a fight. This causes a war between the demons who follow Luke-Shabranigdo and the demons who follows (the completely possessed) Lei Magnus-Shabranigdo.
Finally, Luke-Shabranigdo drags Lina and Gourry into an alternate dimension in which their skills are raised far beyond their actual levels and challenges them in a fair fight. He tells them that if he kills them, his hatred will prevail, Shabranigdo will gain control and the world will be destroyed. But even with their skills increased, they are no match for Luke-Shabranigdo.
In the end, Lina breaks open the four Demon Blood Talismans, (which she obtained by forcefully buying them from Xellos) releasing the power of all four Demon Gods, including Shabranigdo himself. Using Shabranigdo's power against one of his fragments is usually absolutely useless; (Lina sums it up by: "It's like saying "Hey! Help me kill you." to Shabranigdo himself"). But in this case, Luke's desire to die is even stronger than the Demon God's influence and the third part is destroyed at last.