"The secrets of the universe are within my grasp, you cannot stop me now."
- — Illuminor Szeras
The enigmatic Necron Cryptek Plasmancer known as Illuminor Szeras is one of the most reviled beings in the whole galaxy. Both hated and envied by the other Necrontyr, it was Szeras' twisted genius that ultimately made the process of biotranference a reality, and condemned the whole Necrontyr civilisation to an eternal undeath. Uncaring, the megalomaniac Szeras only saw the sacrifice of his people as the first step of his own ascension to C'tan-like godhood.
In the late 41st Millennium, Szeras still labours toward that goal, seeking to unravel the last mysteries of life that escape him. Despite being distrusted and reviled by the majority of his peers and Necron royalty, Szeras' knowledge is so vast, and the help he can grant so potent, that few Nemesors refuse his assistance nor its price when offered.
The C'tan might have provided the required knowledge to the Necrontyr for the biotransference of their consciousness into their new bodies of living metal, but it was Szeras who made it a reality. Even then, he saw it as the first of several steps on the path to ultimate evolution, a journey that would end as a creature not of flesh or metal, but as a god of pure energy. Until that day, Szeras is driven to take full advantage of his android form. After all, no longer must he sleep nor deal with the thousand frailties and distractions to which flesh is heir.
Szeras labours to unravel the mysteries of life, for he fears that he would be a poor sort of god without the secrets of life at his fingertips. He has been on the brink of understanding for many Terran centuries, yet somehow final comprehension always escapes him. Perhaps there are some concepts in the universe that do not reveal themselves before logic, or perhaps it is simply that to understand life, the observer must stand amongst the ranks of the living, and not the undead.
Whatever the reason, the truth is that the secrets of the soul will almost certainly lie forever beyond Szeras' comprehension. This is a truth that he will never accept. Yet, at times, Szeras must turn aside from his work and act in the interest of others -- he requires a constant flow of living subjects, and the most efficient way for him to acquire such creatures is to trade expertise in exchange for captives.
Though Szeras is obsessed with the secrets of life, his aptitude for augmenting the weaponry, and even the mechanical bodies of his fellow Necrons is peerless. Szeras' delving into the form and function of so many disparate living creatures has taught him how to augment almost every facet of Necron machinery -- a trait seen as distasteful by many of his peers. The dissection of Vuzsalen Arachnoid compound eyes unlocked an improved array for Necron targeting optics, and the molecular dissembling of chitinous Ambull hide led the way to more efficient armour configurations, to name but two of many thousands of such advances.
On occasion, Szeras' talents are in such demand amongst the Necron dynasties that he can name his own price -- invariably a harvesting raid targeted against a world of his choosing. Above all, Szeras cherishes Aeldari subjects, as they inevitably produce more intriguing results than any other of the galaxy's creatures. However, few Necron Overlords will deliberately transgress on Aeldari territory for reasons other than solid military gain, so Szeras finds such specimens the hardest of all to acquire. Szeras inevitably accompanies the initial waves of such an attack, the better to pick and choose the subjects that will make up his payment and ensure he is not cheated by his client.
Once seized, Szeras' specimens can look forward only to a pain-filled, though not necessarily brief, existence in the bloodstained and shadowed laboratory catacombs of the Tomb World of Zantragora. Few of Szeras' operations are carried out on the dead, for he believes the knowledge he seeks resides only in the living. Banks of stasis machinery keep the subject alive and aware throughout the procedures, though they do nothing to numb the terrible pain. The specimens' agonised screams are of no consequence to Szeras as he feels no kinship with such inferior beings. He simply shuts off his audio receptors until the repulsive noise subsides, watching impassively as his whirring tools carve the subject apart molecule by molecule.
Luckily for other living beings, Illuminor Szeras sees battle at best as a waste of time and resources that is only warranted in order to harvest the necessary specimens for his studies. The crazed Cryptek Plasmancer only takes to the field in order to make sure the Phaeron he has attached himself to does not renege on his part of the bargain.
On the field of battle, Szeras sometimes leads a harvesting squad toward a promising specimen personally. A scientist to the core, Szeras is not the most fearsome of opponents, although he can certainly stand on his own thanks to the unholy resilience of his Necrodermis body, and his Plasmancer wargear. However, Szeras' most dangerous contribution to a battle is his intimate knowledge of organic anatomical structure, allowing him to drastically augment the performance of the present Necron Warriors and Immortals.
- Necrodermis – Szeras is highly unusual in appearance, having replaced his humanoid legs with a set of four arachnoid limbs and having installed an extra pair of smaller prehensile appendages onto his torso for finer manipulation. His distinct appearance contrasts wildly with any surrounding Necrontyr forces. However, like all other Necrons, Szeras' necrodermis body can withstand and recover in a matter of Terran seconds from incredible amounts of punishment.
- Eldritch Lance – Szeras carries the signature weapon of his Cryptek Plasmancer heritage, a staff-like weapon known as an Eldritch Lance which produces a beam of energy capable of piercing almost any armor or cover at medium range.
- Gaze of Flame – Another typical piece of wargear of the Plasmancer Crypteks, Szeras' sole optic lens emits gouts of eldritch flame toward any foolish enough to approach him, making assailants falter in their assault.
- Mechanical Augmentation – As compensation for his seizing of specimens, Szeras will upgrade the performances of the rank-and-file Necron soldiery of the dynasty he joins. His vast knowledge allows him to tremendously boost either the strength, accuracy or resilience of Necron Warriors and Immortals.
- Codex: Necrons (7th Edition) (Digital Edition), pp. 140-141
- Codex: Necrons (5th Edition), pg. 56