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The Eastern Europian mutant Ilya Zarkov and his wife Glamor Zarkov performed at the popular Magic Mansion in New York City. Unlike the other magicians, Ilya and Glynis had actual magical powers, but they made it seem like their performances were simple parlor tricks. both deciding to keep their secrets to themselves because of the fear civilians had built up for those with super-natural powers.
They lived in the quiet fictional town of Leonia, New Jersey, when the Scarlet Witch and the Vision came to live there. But misunderstood by the locals, a group of bigots soon burned down their house. Determined to stay in the town, they bought another home. The Zarkov’s befriended and helped the superheroes, fearing that they might become targets too. The couple used their magical abilities to spy on the bigots and thwart their plan to burn down the new house.
Not seen for sometime, Illusion and his wife continued to live a normal suburban life as stage magicians. Glamor was injured by a demon when she was scrying and felt a looming evil coming their way. The attack left Glamor in a coma. Devastated by the sight of his beloved wife, IIya went seeking revenge but was quickly killed by the same demon. This demon would later come into conflict with Jennifer Kale, Topaz, and Satanna in the pages of the series Witches.
As Illusion, Ilya has the ability to control the molecules of anything he touches to levitate it, or rearrange the molecules to restore it. He can also control his own body’s molecules in the same manner.