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Warning! This page contains spoilers for Aru Shah and the Song of Death.

AruShah Not part of Riordanverse

The following article is from the Aru Shah continuity and not the Riordanverse canon.

You are a child of the gods, stand up straight!

–Aru Shah and the End of Time

Subala, or Boo by Aru Shah, is her pigeon master who is thousand of years old. It was later revealed that Boo's real name was Shakhuni ("SHAW-koo-nee"), who was the deceiving sorcerer.


In Mahabharata, Shakhuni was the king of Subala, and the brother of the blind queen, Gandhari. Shakhuni deeply loved his sister and felt she had been insulted when she was forced to marry blind king Dhritrashtra. The one who suggested this proposal was Bhishma, who also killed Shakuni's father and brothers. For that, he swore destruction on Aru Shah's ancestors.

Upon the suggestion of his nephew, Duryodhana,orchestrated the infamous and cursed game of dice between the Pandavas and the Kauravas, he succeeded due to Yudhistira's gambling addiction. The eldest Pandava brother was led astray and the Pandavas were forced to exile from the entire kingdom twelve years and then, ultimately, the Kurekshetra war.

Near the end of the war, Shakhuni fought Sahadeva with swords on chariots. Sahadeva swore to kill him when Draupadi was humiliated at the dice game, he succeeded by cutting Shakuni's forehead with an ax.

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Pandava Quartet

Due to his actions in his previous life, Shakhuni was cursed to be reborn as a pigeon and he changed his name to Subala, the name of his father. He turned over a new leaf over the years and even became member of the Council of Guardians who helped other incarnations of the Pandavas. Although, he was eventually kicked off.

Aru Shah and the End of Time

Boo is first seen by Aru Shah on her elephant statue's trunk after she ran away from her frozen mom and friends. He is the one who leads the Pandava who lit the lamp and released the Sleeper to stop the monster before he wakes Shiva to do the cosmic dance and end all time. He comments that Aru is young and a girl, and thinks of her as beneath him. He says that she is a bundle of hormones and incompetence and that they might as well let the world end.

When Aru asks the bird's name, he says that an illustrious name should not be uttered by a child, so he could call him Subala. Aru commented that his name was too many syllables and thinking he was a she, Aru called him Sue. Boo said it was a girl's name and Aru said that there was a country song called a 'Boy Named Sue'. Aru thought if he wouldn't he be called Sue, it was to be Boo.

Nuvola apps important Then there was the little one...

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Boo is crotchety, as people who've seen way too much can sometimes be. While he is dismissive of twelve-year-old Aru at first, he soon becomes fiercely loyal to her, and that makes him extra crotchety.


  • In some versions, Shakhuni used magic dice that would make him win.
  • Boo's role as a guide is similar to Grover Underwood and other Satyrs.
Pandava Quartet
Books: Aru Shah and the End of Time | Aru Shah and the Song of Death | Aru Shah and the Tree of Wishes
Main Characters: Aru Shah | Mini | Brynne Rao | Aiden Acharya | Sleeper | Meenakshi | Takshaka
Council of Guardians: Boo | Urvashi | Hanuman | Jambavan | Uloopi | Surasa | Kubera
Minor Characters: Pandavas | K. P. Shah | Arielle Reddy | Poppy Lopez | Burton Prater | Brahmasura | Valmiki | Palace of Illusions | Shukra | Gandhari | Durvasa | Shakuntula | Rambha | Ravana | Navdeep | Hira | Jaya and Vijaya
Devas: Indra | Dharma Raja | Vayu | Ashvins | Krishna | Shiva | Chitrigupta | Ganesh | Lakshmi | Ritus | Kamadeva | Varuni | Varuna | Ratri | Ushas | Agni | Brahma
Creatures: Makara | Asura | Chakora | Naga | Rakshasa | Vahanas | Ek and Do | Timingala | Time | Wish | Zombie | Apsara | Yaksha
Related Content: Roshani Chokshi | Rick Riordan Presents
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