SPOILERS AHEAD! READ AT YOUR OWN RISK!
Karu as he appears in the manga.
|Age||Estimated 25-31 at time of death|
|Height||Estimated 187cm (6'1")|
|Weight||62 kg (136 lbs)|
|Relatives||Ea (ancestor) |
Teito Klein/Wahrheit Teito Klein
Roseamanelle Ouka Barsburg
Wolfram Eifeler Barsburg
Other members of the Barsburg Family
Recent reincarnation of Ea
|Affiliation||Barsburg Empire |
Barsburg Armed Forces
Seven Houses of God
Chief of Heaven
Karu Ien is a protagonist in the 07-Ghost anime and manga series. He was Chairman Miroku's Begleiter, and on several occasions was shown to be secretly following Ayanami around, presumably in order to fulfill his heavenly duties and keep the reincarnation of Verloren under surveillance.
In Japanese, 'karu' has various meanings, including 'to cut', 'to harvest', 'to spur on', 'to hunt' or 'to impel'. Ien, the surname he used while infiltrating the military, can mean 'beyond, further than'.
Karu was a tall man, being the same height as Hyuuga and Frau who are six foot two, and had a muscular build. His exact age at the time of his death as a Ghost is unknown, but it is presumed that he was fairly young; manga chapter 88 revealed that he was the youngest member of the previous generation of Ghosts. During the Raggs War, he appeared to be around the same age as Teito or slightly older, putting his age at the time of his death in his mid to late twenties or early thirties.
Karu had a long, diamond-shaped face with a rather large, straight nose, and a large mouth with full lips. The upper half of his face was wrapped with bandages, obscuring his eyes. Karu's hair was straight, cropped short, and spiked up in a hairstyle similar to Hyuuga's. The anime shows that his hair was light brown in colour and his skin was also quite dark, but in the manga he had dark hair like Katsuragi (although the cover of manga vol. 15 colors his hair brunette and his eyes amethyst). As he was a member of royalty, it can be considered unusual for him to have dark skin (in the anime). It is possible that he became more tanned as a result of being in the military (he may have had to participate in combat in the sun). In the manga, he had fair skin.
Ten years ago, during the Raggs War, Karu's hair appeared to be worn in a different style, and his build was not as muscular. Although dark-haired, his facial features resembled Miroku's, Ouka's and Dalia's, indicating his heritage as a member of the Barsburg Family.
Manga chapter 88 showed how he looked when he was a child. Before Landkarte injured his eyes, Karu was shown to have narrow, dark-coloured eyes. Both as a child and as an adult, Karu looked somewhat like Teito, and like Teito, kept his hair short throughout his life.
In Kapitel 94, Karu's eyes are shown to be fully healed, and in the afterlife, his appearance is similar to how he looked during the Raggs War.
Being one of the Seven Ghosts, Karu appears as a skeleton when in his true form.
Karu appeared to wear the military uniform: consisting of a black, or dark blue, ankle-length overcoat with golden trimmings on the chest, sleeve cuffs and neck guard. He wore black trousers, knee-length, black, buckled boots, and white gloves, similar to the Black Hawks. It is thought that he wore a plain white shirt under his overcoat (as Mikage was shown to wear a plain, white shirt whilst wearing the Barsburg military uniform). His uniform had a small half mantle hanging off his left shoulder emblazoned with the Barsburg military insignia and a golden shoulder board on his right. Over this he wore a trench coat, of the same colour as the military uniform, with a high neck-guard and a large, rectangular, metal brooch around his neck.
Because of his wound which he received in the past, he bandaged his face. His hands were also bandaged, possibly to hide the Ghost symbol of Ea on his right hand. In the days before he infiltrated the military, Karu wore plain, dark clothes, with a long, plain, light-coloured scarf wrapped around his neck.
In his Ghost form, he wore a hooded black cloak.
While Karu initially appeared to be mild-mannered and very quiet, the manga later showed that he ridiculed others, as shown when he told Teito that Kurena had not had an audience with Chairman Miroku because she was talentless and therefore useless. When he saw that Teito was injured, he also said that Teito would be killed if he didn't try hard.
In order to perform the duties delegated to him, he could be manipulative and emotionally abusive, as shown when he told Teito that if Teito ever tried to escape, he would kill Kurena, whom Teito was close with. However, as of manga chapter 86, it was revealed that he was actually the reincarnation of Ea and therefore an ally of Teito's, and the reason for his past emotional abuse of Teito was so that he (Karu) would escape detection.
Karu tended to outwardly appear emotionally detached, and was usually good at hiding what he felt. Even during the Raggs War era, his expression revealed little, and when Teito was annoyed upon finding out Karu's true identity as the Ghost Ea, Karu was unfazed.
However, Karu's stoic exterior belied a kind-hearted nature. He did much to protect both Teito and Ouka, and often engaged in playful banter with Landkarte. He was also genuinely horrified when he saw Landkarte kill the other Ghosts during the Raggs War. In Kapitel 90, he switched his soul number with Teito's and sacrificed himself so that Teito could escape Landkarte.
Karu was also able and willing to hold a grudge for long periods of time. When he saw the soul number of the man who killed him, he felt angry and vengeful. Karu also mentioned that he'd been tracking down Landkarte for ten years so he could avenge the deaths of his companions, whom Landkarte killed during the Raggs War. At the same time, he was also very loyal, being determined to purify Landkarte's darkness and eventually sacrificing his life in the attempt.
Similar to Teito, Karu took his work seriously, and expected others to be equally hardworking. 
Karu has been Miroku's Begleiter for over ten years, and Karu accompanies him almost everywhere he goes. However, considering that Karu is one of the Seven Ghosts and therefore an ally of Teito's, Karu may not be truly loyal to him.
Karu has been shown to be following Ayanami around. It is unknown whether he does this on Miroku's orders or for his own personal reasons, but being one of the Seven Ghosts, it is likely that he does so in order to collect information on Ayanami that could help in the fight against Verloren. In manga chapter 75, he said that Ayanami is a Warsfeil that cannot be trusted. He also said that Ayanami probably will kill anyone who stands in his way.
|“||I firmly protected you for 10 years. You have to live on.||”|
—Karu, speaking to Teito.
Because Teito's mother, Millea, is a biological descendant of the Barsburg family, Teito is related to Karu by blood.
Teito first met Karu during the Raggs war, when the 07-Ghosts convened to discuss the Pope's treachery by making Teito Pandora's Box. Karu suggested erasing Teito's memories of the Raggs war so that he did not accidentally open Pandora's Box himself. However, after witnessing Teito's courage and willingness to fight, he rescinds his suggestion and decides to put his faith in him, commenting upon his fighting spirit and complimenting Teito's courage with a rare smile.
After the Raggs war, when Chairman Miroku decided to take Teito in as his battle slave, Karu was left in charge of watching Teito to make sure that he didn't escape. During this time, Karu was aloof around Teito because he didn't want anyone suspecting his identity as one of the 07-Ghosts. After Kal reveals his true identity as Ea to Teito, he admits to admiring Teito's courage.
Karu helped train Teito into becoming the formidable fighter he is now and urged Teito to work harder at his training. In chapter 86 Karu said that he felt an urgent need to train Teito well, as Teito's body held Pandora's Box.
Despite his aloofness towards Teito when he was a child, Karu reveals that he truly does care about Teito. During their first meeting in the Raggs war, after witnessing Teito's bravery, he gives the child a rare smile and comments upon his feistiness. In Kapitel 76 and 77, he was willing to put his position as a spy for the church in potential jeopardy so he could contact Relikt and warn him about the danger Teito is in.
In Kapitel 86, Karu admitted that he kept Teito sheltered within the mansion due to over-protectiveness, and once beat Teito half to death as punishment for trying to leave. In Kapitel 90, instead of allowing Teito to use himself as "bait" to draw Landkarte away from his bedridden mother and friends, Kal switches his current soul number (which Landkarte doesn't know) with Teito's so that Landkarte will come after Karu instead, giving Teito time to reunite with Frau. This decision ultimately causes Karu's death when Landkarte kills him to escape the Book of Hades to find Teito.
In chapter 94, Kal reunites with Teito within Verloren's core, thanking Teito for helping Landkarte and telling Teito that he has to escape Pandora's Box. Before he ascends to heaven, Karu gently pats Teito's head and gives him another rare smile as a final farewell.
Raggs War Ghosts
|“||What's wrong? You've played too much and exhausted yourself?||”|
—Karu, to Landkarte when they were children Ghosts.
When Karu was a child, he had a good relationship with the child Landkarte. He said that Landkarte was the first person who made him have the idea of friends. During the Raggs War, when Landkarte killed the other Ghosts, Karu/Ea evidently felt anguished and sad. Landkarte then tried to kill Karu as well, but Karu switched his (Karu's) soul number with someone else's, and managed to escape. Karu then remained undercover in the military while keeping an eye on Landkarte for ten years.
When Karu was reincarnated as Ea, the first time he met Landkarte, his first impression was that they would not get along.. Karu was initially often annoyed with Landkarte, but over time, they grew closer, and by the time the Raggs War broke out, Landkarte was already an important friend to him.
|“||I'll stay here and purify your darkness. Landkarte, from now on, don't be tormented anymore...||”|
—Karu, to Landkarate during their battle.
In chapter 90, Landkarte finally reunites with Karu, and the two began to fight in chapter 91. Karu tried to trap Landkarte in the Book of Hades forever to purify all human souls' darkness that the Shadow Man has taken over from humans, but Landkarte, unknown how he could disobey Ea's command inside the Book's realm, managed to move to Karu's back and killed him. Before Karu died and vanished, he expressed regret that he could not save or help Landkarte. The two reunited and reconciled in the afterlife.
Fea Kreuz Raggs: After Karu woke up at Barsburg's Great Church, Fea Kreuz was the first of the Ghosts to greet him, introducing himself politely and talking kindly with him. It seems that Karu has a lot of respect for Kreuz, as even after his eyes are severely wounded by Landkarte, Karu still tries his best to warn Kreuz of the danger a traitorous Landkarte poses to him.
After Fea Kreuz died in the Raggs war and Vertrag's soul was devoured by Verloren, Karu became the guardian of Teito, Fea Kreuz's nephew, and protected him for the next ten years of his life in place of his fallen comrade.
Raggs War Profe: Was the second Ghost to meet and introduce herself to the new Ea, and commented on how cute Karu was when he first awoke.
Raggs War Relikt: Relikt was the third Ghost to greet Karu, and commented on his age, questioning whether or not he'd be able to handle the Book of Hades.
Guido: Zehel was the fourth Ghost to greet Karu as the new Ea. During their first meeting after Karu woke up, Zehel gets too close to Karu, causing him to become defensive at Guido's proximity. Despite the fact that Relikt was doubtful that Karu could handle the Book of Hades, Guido supported him, saying that kids like Karu were energetic and he would be able to handle the Book fine.
Raggs War Fest: Was the fifth Ghost to introduce himself to Karu. He deduced that Karu must have been killed off for another Barsburg family member's benefit.
Lance: Karu contacted Lance while both of them were in the Hohburg Fortress, and warned him of Teito's current situation in an attempt to help Teito. Karu has not commented on Lance's death, but is presumably aware of it.
Kurena: Karu supervised Kurena, and seemed to treat her unkindly. However, he once told her about Teito's whereabouts. It is possible that, as with Teito, Karu treated her roughly in order to not rouse suspicion.
Mikhail: In Kapitel 86, Mikhail expressed displeasure at Karu's past abusive treatment of Teito, although Karu never truly had bad intentions towards Teito. When the Raggs War broke out and Kreuz, with Teito, met with the other Ghosts, Mikhail attempted to attack Zehel (who had made a remark that annoyed the angel) whilst possessing Teito, but the attack missed and hit Ea instead. However, Karu did not retaliate.
It seems that Mikhail was aware of Karu's moving the original Ouka's soul into the current Ouka's body ten years ago, even before Karu said so himself. Both of them being immortal beings, Mikhail and Karu have known each other for very long. Apart from that, little else is known about their relationship.
As with the other Ghosts, Mikhail addresses Karu by his Ghost name instead of by his human name.
Raphael: As with Mikhail, Karu has known Raphael for a very long time, both of them being immortal beings. Apart from that, little else is known about their relationship.
Roseamanelle Ouka Barsburg (OR-0007): Ten years ago, Karu overwrote the Book of Hades and moved the original Ouka's soul into the body of her 7th clone. As with Teito, he has praised Ouka (see Kapitel 86). As both Karu and Ouka are blood Barsburgs, they are related by blood. Karu has been shown to share Ouka's dislike of most of the rest of the Barsburg family.
Other members of the Barsburg Family
It was implied in Kapitel 88 that Karu was killed by one of his own relatives (Karu was shown having a flashback of an unnamed man saying 'It's too late! Now my son will have an upper hand in his promotion!'). Once, when Karu was managing the Book of Hades and noticed the man's soul number, he was angered and felt murderous.
Karu thought of relationships in the Barsburg Family as 'love-hate drama', and felt desperate when he was a child. This could indicate that, as a human, he felt helpless and disliked his family.
When Emperor Wolfram wanted to stay with Ouka while she prepared to fight Ayanami, Karu told him that he (Wolfram) had to protect Millea, Teito's mother, indicating that he may care somewhat for Millea, or at least, that he cares enough about her to ensure that she is protected and taken care of in her ill condition. Emperor Wolfram did not object when Karu prevented him from staying with Ouka, and told a team of scientists who were trying to prevent Karu and Teito from leaving the laboratory to let them through, showing that he trusts Karu to a certain extent.
Abilities and Attributes
Karu has been shown to be very quick and agile, despite his eyes being covered. He was able to easily dodge Katsuragi's sword strike.
Karu's ability as the Ghost Ea is to decide who goes to Heaven, and who is reincarnated based on their actions. He also can move that person's soul from the first broken body (vessel) to a new one, and that person can then continue to live, for example Roseamanelle Ouka Barsburg (OR-0007). Ea is also the only one who can use the Book of Hades after Verloren's fall.
Like the other Ghosts, Karu's heart does not beat and his body does not give off heat, so he has higher resistance to low temperatures than ordinary humans. As a Ghost, Karu would also recover more quickly than ordinary humans if injured.
Karu was born on May 3 (Citation Needed) to two unknown members of the Barsburg royal family. Manga chapter 88 shows that when he was a child, there was a lot of conflict happening inside the Barsburg royal home. One of his own relatives killed him via poisoning. Karu reincarnated as Ea after his physical death and was the youngest Ghost in the previous generation of Ghosts.
In Miroku's employment
Karu was shown to have watched Teito, from when he was a child under Miroku's supervision, in order to make sure he didn't escape.
|This character has made at least one appearance where they are the focus of a shot.|
|This character has made at least one background appearance.|
|This character makes no appearance, but is mentioned by name or title.|
|This character makes no appearance, and is not mentioned by name or title|
A meeting about the Eye
Karu is shown to be keeping a close eye on Kurena, the maid who took care of Teito while he was under Miroku's supervision.
In the manga, Karu was shown to be following the Chief of Staff, Ayanami, around on several occasions. On one occasion Ayanami returned to his job after recovering from a serious injury sustained whilst fighting Castor, Karu was shown to be listening to the conversation he (Ayanami) was having with Katsuragi through the walls. When Katsuragi suspected something, and drove his sword through the wall, Karu was able to dodge it, making the attack miss by mere inches. Karu continued to follow Ayanami as the Black Hawks walked on.
- Before he switched it with Teito's, Karu's soul number was 042761.
- He is one of three Ghost vessels known to have died of poisoning, the other two being Raggs War Profe and Raggs War Fest.
- Karu's real first name remains unknown, but it is presumed that his family name was Barsburg when he was human.
- 'Landkarte...why? Didn't you strongly wish for peace?! ' (in Kapitel 88, after seeing Landkarte kill three other Ghosts)
- 'For a shinigami, dragging along his past life will only interfere with his work.' (to Landkarte, in Kapitel 88)
- 'Even though I've become a reaper, it's not like my heart has grown stronger. It's just, for the first time, I've recognized an existence called a comrade.' (a young Karu to himself about Landkarte, in Kapitel 88)
- 'Do not follow me.' (to Landkarte when they were children)
- 'You never change.' (to Kurena)
- 'There was an urgent need to train you, because you are the vessel of Pandora's Box.' (to Teito)
- Manga chapter 62.
- As a child, he called Landkarte a "loafer", and told a young Teito to work harder. He was also often seen carrying out his Ghost duties, and only took breaks for eating and playing with Landkarte.
- Kapitel 90
- "どうした... あそびつかれか？"Kapitel 91
- "おれがずっとここでおまえのやみを浄化する だから... これいじょう... くるしむな..."Kapitel 91