Julian Delphiki II, best known by his nickname Bean, was a Battle School Student and a member of Ender's Jeesh, later becoming the Strategos. He is the main protagonist of the Shadow Saga, and was first introduced in Ender's Game.
Life in Rotterdam
Bean was born in Rotterdam in 6 BX as the result of an illegal experiment in genetic engineering conducted by a scientist named Volescu. Volescu stole 23 frozen fertilized eggs from his half-brother Julian Delphiki I, and activated Anton's Key in each of them. When Bean was only about a year old, Volescu evidently learned that a discovery of his illegal experiment was imminent, and killed all of the children except for Bean, who escaped his purge by crawling into a toilet tank and hiding there for several days. Later, a janitor named Pablo de Noches discovered him there and took him home. After a short time of living with the janitor, who was not authorized to have children, Bean perceived that he was not welcome there and wandered out to live on the streets of Rotterdam.
Later, when he was approximately four years old, Bean joined Poke's Crew, a band of street orphans. He did this by offering the leader, Poke, a plan he had devised to get more food by recruiting a "bully" to get them into the soup kitchen. Realizing Bean could be an asset to her, Poke allowed him to join the crew and fed him, saving him from starvation. To his consternation, however, Poke decided to target Achilles de Flandres, who was one of the lowest individuals in the bully hierarchy due to his bad foot. When they attacked Achilles, Bean saw that he would be dangerous to them, and he advised Poke to kill Achilles. However, she chose instead to show him the same mercy she had shown Bean, sparing his life.
After that, Achilles appointed himself the crew's "papa" and successfully carried out their plan, winning them a steady supply of food and himself a higher social status among the older street children. Later, when Achilles began contemplating killing Poke in revenge for his humiliation at her hands, Poke thought she needed to intervene, thinking that it was Bean who Achilles was angry at. She met with Achilles late one night to plead with him for Bean's life. Bean witnessed this meeting, and though he was not present for its fatal conclusion, found Poke's body floating in the Rhine river shortly thereafter. This caused Bean incredible guilt, and became a defining incident in his life that would return to haunt him repeatedly.
Soon after this, Bean was taken in by the nun Carlotta, who administered tests on him to see if he was a potential candidate for Battle School. Despite his young age, he scored extremely high on the tests and was admitted to the school.
Upon entering Battle School, Bean was immediately singled out as the highest scoring student in his launch, leading in all tests pertaining to intellect, psychology and command, despite scoring lowest in the tests of physical aptitude. Suspicious of the motives of his teachers, Bean worked around the school system, creating an alternate login to study his fellow students and using his small size to explore the ship via the air vents. Beans' intellect allowed him to advance quickly through his classes and study military history in his spare time, resulting in him accidentally discerning the real motives of the International Fleet and the 'true' Third Invasion - an attack on the Formic Homeworld.
Closely studied by the Battle School staff, Bean was commissioned to create an army comprising of launchies and unorthodox students, to be commanded by Ender Wiggin, another genius Battle School student. The army roster he created was used by Colonel Graff and formed into Dragon Army. Dragon quickly established dominance in the rankings, and after their eighth battle as an army Ender gave Bean command of a 'special' Toon, designed to innovate and test new strategies, and so Bean became the effective commander of a sixth toon. After Ender's confrontation with Bonzo Madrid in the bathroom, Dragon Army fought against two armies, and after their victory both Ender and Bean received transfer notices, with Bean being promoted to commanded of Rabbit Army, and Ender transferred to Command School.
As commander, Bean encouraged his soldiers to ignore the Battle School's rankings and focus on the bigger picture, the Third Invasion. However, Bean was faced with the arrival of Achilles to Battle School who was also placed in Rabbit Army by the teachers in an attempt to test Bean as they had Ender with Bonzo. Bean quickly outmaneuvered Achilles and had him confess his crimes, resulting in Achilles' arrest, and Bean's transfer out of Battle School at the completion of the test.
Along with other select Battle School students including Dragon Army's toon leaders and Petra Arkanian, Bean was taken to Tactical School in the Condor for one week. After this preparation the group headed to Command School on Eros, where they worked tirelessly for weeks with Ender in simulations against Formic fleets. At the conclusion of their "final simulation" the Fleet revealed to Ender's Jeesh that the simulations had been real the whole time, and that the Formics had been annihilated by Ender's use of the Molecular Disruption Device.
Over the next 5 days, Ender's Jeesh remained on Eros under lockdown while the League War took place. Afterward, the Jeesh began to disperse as the individual members returned home to their families.
After the war, Bean learned from Graff of his true biological family. His friend and fellow Battle School student Nikolai Delphiki was his brother, and his biological parents, Julian and Elena Delphiki, have given him the name Julian Delphiki II. Upon his return to Earth, Bean was allowed to live with his biological family.
Shadow of the Hegemon
With events on Eros behind them, Bean and the other Battle School children are returned to Earth to their families. Bean, reunited with the Delphikis, was vacationing when all the members of Ender's Jeesh were kidnapped. When an attempt was made on his life, Bean separated from his family and decides to go into hiding with Sister Carlotta in order to rescue the kidnapped members. He realized that the person behind the kidnappings is none other than Achilles, who escaped the mental hospital with aid from the Russians, and that the only person who had the power to stop Achilles is Locke, Peter Wiggin. After convincing Peter Wiggin to 'come out' as Locke and expose Achilles as the mastermind behind the kidnappings, all the kidnapped members of Ender's Jeesh are rescued except for Petra Arkanian, who was taken by Achilles. In order to obtain resources to save Petra from Achilles, Bean escaped to Thailand, where he aided Suriyawong, a member of Ender's Dragon Army, and thwarted another attempt on both Suriyawong and his life, but Bean is unable to save Sister Carlotta from Achilles. Finally, with the help of Suriyawong and Virlomi, Bean rescued Petra from Achilles, but in exchange surrendered Achilles to the Chinese military. After Petra's extraction, Peter appointed Bean as Strategos.
As Strategos, Bean and Suriyawong served under the Hegemon, helping Peter Wiggin. Bean was given a simple extraction assignment but was replaced by Suriyawong at the last minute by Peter. Realizing that Peter is planning to rescue Achilles, Bean and Petra left the Hegemony and went into hiding together. While in hiding, Bean and Petra married, but Bean was wary of having children for fear of passing on his genetic condition to his future children. After being convinced by Anton and Petra, Bean agreed to have children with Petra, on the condition that none of the children may bear Anton's Key. Anton revealed that the only person who can help them was none other than Volescu, the man who turned Anton's Key in Bean. Bean and Petra visited Volescu who falsely promises them of being able to identify which embryos have Anton's Key. Shortly after Petra was implanted with one of the embryos, the rest of the embryos were stolen by Achilles, who was working with Volescu. After Achilles attempted to murder the Hegemon and had no options of escape, he contacted Bean for a meeting, with the promise of the stolen embryos if Bean could provide him escape. Bean correctly deduced that Achilles didn't have the embryos and never intended to give the embryos to Bean, but agreed to the meeting. Having learned from Ender that you can only defeat your enemy when you truly love them the way they love themselves, Bean killed Achilles, knowing that that was the last thing Achilles expected Bean to do, especially without the knowledge of the stolen embryos' existence. Bean promised to Petra that he will find the stolen embryos before he dies.
Shadow of the Giant
With Achilles finally dead, Bean and Petra searched desperately for their 8 stolen embryos. All the meanwhile, Bean was dying from his gigantism and there was only a limited amount of time he had to spend with Petra, find their stolen embryos and help Peter Wiggin unite the world together. In the end, with the aid of Hyrum Graff, Bean was able to locate 7 of the stolen embryos, the 8th still missing. With three of the babies affected by Anton's Key and no cure in sight, Bean decided to divorce Petra, in order for her to re-marry and provide a father figure for her children, so that he can prolong his life in space and find a cure for their children.
Shadows in Flight
While 421 years passed for the rest of humanity, only 5 years passed for the crew of the Herodotus. At first, Bean was still small enough to move around the ship, but eventually he grew too large and was forced to remain in the hanger of the ship. He spent his time searching for a habitable planet for his children to live on and eventually have children of their own with the artificial wombs on the ship.
Eventually Bean located a planet that was suitable, and cut off communication with Starways Congress. He maneuvered the ship's trajectory toward the planet. At the same time, the Formic Ark was also heading for the planet, and the two eventually met up in orbit. Bean's children investigated the alien ship and discovered Formic drones, who showed Bean's children how to cure the giantism of Anton's Key through the use of organelles. They transported Bean's massive body on to the Formic Ark for him to see nature one more time, and then he died aboard the ship.
Bean was incredibly brilliant, as was genetically determined by Anton’s Key. This played directly into his prowess in military strategy. He was also a very selfless person, based on his decisions in life. For example, he chose to leave Petra to give his children a father figure in Peter Wiggin, and initially didn’t have children for fear they would inherit his genetic traits that would ultimately kill them. However, Bean also displays the capacity for cold blooded murder, though Achilles was by no means an innocent victim. Bean excels in finding the way to defeat his enemies in the way they least expect. Even in seemingly innocent situations, as with the cabs following the formation of the embryos, he was able to protect both Petra and himself, even if he put himself in danger to do so.
- Bean is portrayed by Aramis Knight in Ender's Game (Film).
- Bean is tied with Ender in having the most books that feature him as the protagonist in the Enderverse.
- "Remember, the enemy's gate is down."
- — Ender's Game