"Everyone, they concerned for Queek’s sanity. Perhaps you worry less for what is in Queek’s head, and more on keeping what is in yours."
- – Queek on his mental stability.
Queek Head-Taker (also known as Headtaker in some editions) is a Skaven special character for Warhammer Fantasy and Lord of the City of Pillars. Introduced in the very first Skaven army book in 4th edition, Queek is the acting head of Clan Mors. He commands his fellow skaven in the place of Lord Gnawdwell, who sits on the Council of Thirteen.
Up until the creation of Tretch Craventail in 7th edition, Queek was the only Warlord-based skaven special character (and even then, Tretch is more of a Chieftain than a Warlord).
Reared specially by Gnawdwell himself, Queek is uncommonly brave, savage and skilled for a standard skaven; unlike most of his cowardly, ill-trained ilk, Queek is a skilled warrior and has a fierce pride, meaning he revels in facing down and defeating enemy champions. His favored weapon is an enchanted warpick called "Dwarf-Gouger", which comes in handy given that he spends most of his time fighting the night goblin hordes of Skarsnik and the dawi of Belegar Ironhammer. Queek's most common fighting method is described as "windmill-style" (a.k.a. swing your arms in a downward, circular motion at the enemy) which is hilarious for being ridiculous, but awesome, and an inherently skaven thing to do.
Queek is reckless, kill happy and mentally unstable (he believes his trophy heads speak to him, and he values them as trusted friends and confidants). Despite (or possibly because of) this, he has some of the most cordial relationships that any skaven has ever had with another. For his skill on the battlefield and lack of political skills Gnawdwell considers him irreplaceable and is actually proud of him (in the same way a blacksmith is proud of a well made weapon). He also has a buddy in Ska Bloodtail, another peculiar Stormvermin who was larger even than Queek, yet remained oddly loyal.
Much like another crimson armored warrior with a penchant for collecting heads, Queek loathes working with grey seers, likely due to them exemplifying orthodox Skaven tactics. This would change (for the worse) when he was forced to work with Thanquol in capturing a dwarf city. The greatest of grey seers had a mummified skaven paw which he used to summon a Verminlord to fight for Clan Mors, but since this is Thanquol we’re talking about, the paw turned out to be cursed and instead summoned mother-fucking Skarbrand instead. And not even Queek was crazy or bold enough to challenge THE greater daemon of Khorne, engaging for the first time in the time honored skaven tradition of “rapid tactical withdrawal”. From this moment onwards, Queek’s distrust for grey seers evolved into outright animosity and hatred.
His Collection of Heads
- Morglum Blacktoof: The first head to adorn Queek’s trophy rack. An orc warboss that Queek slew during his very first victory. Blacktoof’s voice would later lead Queek to Dwarf Gouger. Queek regarded him as the smartest of the heads, a questionable decision considering this is an orc we’re talking about. Unfortunately, Blacktoof’s skull was shattered during the battle of Karak-Azul, and Queek killed many dwarf-things in Blacktoof’s name.
- Ikit Slash: No, not that one. A rival Skaven warlord, now the massive skeleton on the Headtaker’s trophy rack. He was the leader of the Fester Spike warren, which were deemed as traitors by Clan Mors, and thus sentenced to death. Queek had built an elaborate series of tunnels all around Ikit’s base, which Ikit promptly filled to the brim with his own forces. Exactly what Queek wanted. The Headtaker burrowed from behind and slew Ikit, taking his entire spine and skull for his trophy rack. He was the most vocal of Queek’s voices, offering constant praise and warnings against any potential betrayals.
- Krug Ironhand: The dwarf king of Karak-Drazh (later known to Greenskins as Black Crag). His voice rarely spoke, only encouraging violence or to warn Queek of danger.
- Albrecht Kraus: A baron of Averland. When his voice proved to be too chatty and annoying to the Headtaker, he smashed the man-thing’s decapitated skull and instead kept the baron’s hands.
- Sleek Sharpwit: Also known as Old-thing, he was Lord Gnawdwell’s favored pupil before Queek. He walked a thin line of scheming for and against the Headtaker before eventually deciding enough was enough. He was no match for the younger and hungrier warlord, even while hopped up on warpstone. His skull took Blacktoof’s place on Queek’s rack and remained an ever present voice of condemnation and lecture for Queek.
Appearing primarily in the 4th book, Thanquol (no surprise there), Queek was assisted by Skreech Verminking in the final war for Karak Eight Peaks, making a temporary alliance with Skarsnik to finally push out the dwarfs. It was here where Queek managed to kill Belegar Ironhammer, shattering what many considered the last hope for the dwarfs of the Worlds Edge Mountains. Naturally the Skaven betrayed the Night Goblins and the resulting scuffle obliterated all of the fallen hold after Skarsnik detonated a Skyre explosive in a spiteful “If I can’t have it no one can!” action.
The Head-Taker was later seen leading a massive swarm of Skaven against Karaz-A-Karak along with all the other Skaven special characters (minus Skrolk, who blew up with Lustria, and Tretch, who the writers forgot about). True to form, he challenged Thorgrim Grudgebearer to a duel for the fate of the Everpeak, where the High King effortlessly beat down Queek while shouting all of the warlord’s crimes from the Book of Grudges. Only after smashing Dwarf-Gouger and listing the death of Belegar Ironhammer did Thorgrim finally kill Queek Head-Taker by crushing his neck with his bare hands. Queek’s death broke the Skaven army and they all fled back to Skavenblight, however the wounds he inflicted on Thorgrim did allow for Deathmaster Snikch to end the High King’s life.
|Deathmaster Snikch - Ghoritch - Ikit Claw - Klawmunkast - Lord Skrolk |
Morbus Sanguis - Queek Head-Taker - Skreet Verminkin - Skweel Gnawtooth
Thanquol - Throt the Unclean - Tretch Craventail