|This article is about a/an item in Garo.|
- "My name is Zaruba. I came to be when Garo came to be and I am forever with him."
- ―Zaruba introduces himself to Leon Luis[src]
Madou Ring Zaruba (魔導輪ザルバ, Madōrin Zaruba?) is the Madou Ring for Golden Knight Garo's duties as a Makai Knight. He is a recurring character in the series, acting as a guide for the wearers of the Garo armor and being the narrator of the series in some episodes.
As revealed in the animated adaption of the Garo series, Garo: Honoo no Kokuin, Zaruba was created with the soul of a Horror that was pacified rather than destroyed to serve the first Garo and all those who bare the title after.
Before the animation, settings written by Keita Amemiya had describe details about Zaruba's origin story. According to Amemiya, unlike other Horrors, Zaruba has been thinking about co-existence with humans in ancient time. He made a contract with Makai Knights that he will help them defeat Horrors by seal his body in a form of a ring, and in reward, Makai Knights will feed Zaruba with life energy. Since this contract was signed, Zaruba is no longer treated as a Horror but a typical race of Makai Beast.
Being of Horror origin, Zaruba can sense Horrors and possesses knowledge on particular ones. Zaruba also establishes a pact with his owner, in return for one day of the owner's life once every new moon. The full strength of Zaruba is unknown; throughout the series he's able to help dispel confusion, detect various spiritual energies, summon the Garoken, speak for the dead, temporary flight, breathe Madou Fire, create parts of himself into a ring to help locate and detect Horrors, and see through illusions. His aid is not limited to Makai Knights—Kaoru once used Zaruba to guide her through the Crimson Forest back to the human world.
While Zaruba can be cheeky at times and make snarky remarks at Horrors, he is serious in his duties of protecting his charges. He offers insight about the Makai Realm and will guide his wearer to safety or give battle strategies and warnings for combat against Horrors.
Garo: Honoo no Kokuin
During the witch hunts of Valiante, he had not been worn since the death of the previous Garo though own by his daughter's Anna, Zaruba was damaged and was entrusted to Makai Priest Gael by Germán Luis to be repaired. Zaruba was originally to be given back to Germán sixteen years later after being repaired to be worn by his son Leon Luis, the new Garo. However, Gael ended up being killed by an apprentice knight named Marcelo who took the ring and was later made into the host of the Horror Onbla. After Leon claims the ring, Zaruba establishes their pact and uses his power to suppress Leon's flames at first. But eventually, Leon's flames overwhelm Zaruba as he is given to Leon's cousin Alfonso San Valiante to serve him. Zaruba is later returned to León, considering him finally worthy of the Garo title.
Garo: Chapter of the Black Wolf
By this point in time, Zaruba belonged to Taiga Saezima. After Taiga was killed, Kouga wore his father's ring. Zaruba himself was created by the Makai Priest Amon who creates the anti-Horror equipment to aid and support a Makai Knight.
During Garo's final fight against Kiba, Kouga could not summon his armor due to a magic seal placed by Kiba. Zaruba told Kouga to throw him into the dimensional rip in an attempt to bring his armor. After a long exaggerated battle with Kiba, Kouga tried to summon Garo again and this time Kouga's armor was brought out by cherubs to help him gear up, signfying that this was a different, more powerful summon of the armor. The armor was slightly different this time, and included a cape unlike previous transformations. Zaruba apparently used all of his energy to merge the power of all the past Garo knights into the armor temporarily and bring it to Kouga, and after his victory, he was too weak and disintegrated. Before parting ways, Rei gave Kouga a re-forged Zaruba as a token of appreciation from the new East Watchdog, but he did not have any of his previous memories and didn't like his name.
Zaruba would return as Kouga's Madou Ring in Garo Special: Beast of the Midnight Sun. He didn't display any of his additional capabilities besides detecting Horrors. Zaruba seemed to dislike "old man" Goruba. Legules tried to convert him into the Legules family, but he resisted. Zaruba is seen with Kouga in happier times as they are with Kaoru.
Soukoku no Mayryu
During Kouga's journey to The Promised Land, Zaruba fell off Kouga's hand when he entered the portal to the Forest of Chaos. Due to a time displacement and the effect of The Promised Land on objects, Zaruba became the Guardian of Wisdom and remained in the Temple of Wisdom for centuries. When Kouga arrived to consult the Guardian of Wisdom, he was surprised to see his friend, but Zaruba had no memory of Kouga. He then fought Kouga as a humanoid version of himself and nearly killed him until some of Kouga's blood stained his forehead, this apparently triggered his memories of his time with him and Zaruba shielded Kouga from an oncoming boulder before reverting back to a Madou Ring. During their attempt to retrieve the Garoken, Taiga's spirit appeared and Zaruba said while he had lost his memories of his time with his former owner, he felt nostalgic seeing him again.
Makai no Hana
After Kouga passed down the title of Garo to his son Raiga, Zaruba became his guide and aided him in locating Horrors
Garo ~ Yami o Terasu Mono ~
Zaruba was worn by Ryuga Dougai, but he did not speak very much to the young warrior due to him not acknowledging Ryuga as the wearer of Garo. However he did consult with Burai on matters involving Madou Horrors.