Doombreed, the Skull Lord is a mighty Daemon Prince of Khorne, said by some to be older and more powerful than even the Daemon Primarchs, who wears a cloak made from the skulls of a thousand Space Marines.
Doombreed was one of the first of Khorne's servants. His True Name was long forgotten, remembered only on a scroll of dried skin, but he was once human, a mighty warlord who led armies which ravaged entire nations on Terra long ago in the Age of Terra around M1/M2[7b]. He was responsible for genocide and murder on a grand scale, such wanton carnage drawing the eye of the god Khorne, still relatively young, who granted the warlord the ultimate reward of Daemonhood.
When Accazzar-Beta refused to pay fealty to Horus, he led an attack on the world that served as a sacrifice to summon Doombreed. Manifesting from a red pearl, Doombreed slaughtered the entire world while the Warmaster's forces withdrew. Argonis, a Herald brought to the surface by Horus to witness the summoning of Doombreed, ensured Accazzar-Beta would live forever as an example of the 'Dark Compliance' that awaited any who resisted the Warmaster.
The Sorcerer Ctesias of the Thousand Sons discovered the True Name of Doombreed, stealing it from a scroll of dried skin. Although he vowed never to release it after realising what it was, he set it free on Sortiarius when Ahzek Ahriman returned for the first time since his exile in a bid to undo the Rubric. In the Battle of Sortiarius, Doombreed claimed the 'skull' of the Daemon-Warlord Titan Czetherrtihor in single combat, raising it in offering to Khorne.
Fifth Black Crusade
Millennia later, he was summoned by Abaddon the Despoiler during the 5th Black Crusade by the sacrifice of ten million souls on Tarinth. Promised the skulls of a thousand Space Marines, he declared war on the Adeptus Astartes. During this Crusade two loyal Chapters — the Warhawks and the Venerators — were wiped out. A force of Blood Angels aboard the battle barge Eclipse of Hope went missing in the counter-attack against Doombreed, sacrificing their freedom and souls to tether the daemon prince to the planet Pallevon.[7c]
Five millennia after its disappearance, the Eclipse of Hope was encountered by Chief Librarian Mephiston of the Blood Angels, leading him to Pallevon. There, the Blood Angels encountered a perfect statue of Sanguinius in the moment of his death at Horus' hand - a perfect memory captured in gold, silver, and ruby.[7a] Mephiston alone believed the statue to be tainted and attempted to destroy it, but in so doing merely released the daemon prince from his five millennia of imprisonment.[7b] Doombreed fought Mephiston, attempting to convince him to join Khorne. The Lord of Death succeeded in banishing the daemon prince, but had set him free.[7c]
Doombreed takes the form of a giant Bloodthirster, wreathed in black smoke which becomes red muscle as he grows ever larger feeding on slaughter. Hooved and winged, his teeth are the size of swords and scraps of flayed fur and skin hang from his wet muzzle. He wears brazen Chaos armour resistant to psychic attack, a Collar of Khorne, and a cloak woven with the skulls of a thousand Space Marines Alongside a mighty Axe of Khorne he carries the Rod of Khorne, a massive staff of twisted bone bearing the icon of the Blood God.
- 1: Codex: Chaos Space Marines (4th Edition), pg. 32
- 2: Liber Chaotica: Khorne, Black Crusades
- 3: Black Legion - A Codex: Chaos Space Marines Supplement (E-Book) pg. 51
- 4: Codex: Chaos (2nd Edition), pgs. 139–140
- 5: Ahriman: Unchanged (Novel), Chapter XX: Ritual War
- 6: Eclipse of Hope (Short Story)
- 7: Mephiston: Lord of Death (Novella)
- 8: Warhammer 40,000 8th Edition Rulebook pg. 167
- 9: Dark Compliance (Audio Drama)