Quan Jian was a Marine Corps buddy of John Parker who managed Parker’s farm. He had an initially hostile attitude toward JT Austin, believing him to be more trouble than would be worth the Parkers’ time. He imposed a discipline reminiscent of his time in the military out in the fields.
After about a month, Quan began defending JT from some of the more belligerent farm hands. He further softened toward the boy when Marcus Leitman, whom Quan found a nuisance, reacted angrily toward JT’s presence on the Parker farm.
The night the Gelt Incursion began, Quan activated into the Colonial Guard, dropping off JT and Parker’s daughter Lizzy at a nearby shelter. After the invasion began in earnest, he gathered as many Guard and volunteers as he could find, then headed for John Parker’s property to the north, Walden. There, he found JT and Lizzy hiding from the aliens and drafted them into the nascent resistance.
Quan objected strongly to JT and Lizzy getting married, but Lizzy overruled him. Although Quan was her godfather, she pointed out that she was now an adult.
When Ramirez’s party returned to camp with the prisoner Farset, Quan promised him a Section 11 execution. He postponed the sentence when another party entered camp with a live Gelt prisoner. The prisoner, Wolzac Evart, eventually extrapolated Humanic and demanded his release. When Quan threatened to torture him for information, Wolzac bit a false tooth to release a suicide toxin that killed him and liquefied his body.
When JT returned to Walden, Quan was outraged and openly contemplated a Section 11 execution for him. Suicide, as a Navy lieutenant commander pulled rank on him and ordered him to stand down. Davra Andraste, Connor Duffy, and Ellie Nardino also intervened, saying he had to arrest them as well. He relented.
That evening, after everyone arrived at Walden, Quan was moved to tears as Suicide eulogized Lizzy, speaking about her death. He acknowledged to JT that he understood the boy loved her, but Quan would always blame him for her death. JT acknowledged the same for Quan and told him to get the hell off his property when the war ended.
When the maglev returned from east, Quan worked with Suicide to coordinate an attack on the Founders' Mine. Reluctantly, he took JT Austin back under his command. Austin explained to him how Duffy had rigged a heat dish to a runabout. After arguing with Ramirez about the planned feint on the Founders' Mine, he had JT and a former Parker farm hand test the weapon on a stray lycanth who had been harassing the camp. They moved out at dawn the following morning.
Quan led the feint on the Founders’ Mine. He secured the entry yard, but Ramirez’s contingent ended up trapped inside when Kray himself ambushed them. Kray executed Ramirez and captured JT.
Some time after the resistance occupied the Founders’ Mine, Col. Jovann granted him a field commission, rank of major.
JT, Yuwono, and Davra left camp against orders. When Davra returned five months later, Quan arrested her and subjected her to intense interrogation. However, at her hearing, he, along with Col. Jovann and another officer, dismissed a couple of charges and ruled her sentence to be her time in captivity with the Gelt.
When Jovann left for a mission to meet Lucius Kray in Riverside, Quan took charge of the Founders’ Mine. Shortly thereafter, a probe landed in the entry yard to the Founders’ Mine, a holographic message from Admiral Burke alerting him to the coming liberation. He immediately mobilized the main body of the resistance.
After the Liberation of Amargosa, Quan accepted majority ownership of the Parker family farm, which he later renamed “Lizzy’s Farm.” JT told him he deserved it as her godfather, and he was no farmer. He agreed to help work the farm, however, and remained a partner in the business. One of his first acts, after the Gelt settlers who took the farm rebuilt it and handed it back, was to hire Eric Yuwono to take JT’s place as the regular bot wrangler.
Late in 433, Quan invited JT and Ellie Nardino to the farm. JT, as partner, would help plan and program the tractbots for the next season and the crop yields. As Ellie had come along, she offered to apply her mech knowledge to tuning the AI-capable equipment. Quan had another motive, wanting to introduce his two proteges to a new boyfriend. However, he found the pair’s new relationship amusing.