Lan Fan is the bodyguard of prince Ling Yao of the Xing Empire. After losing her left arm in battle, she had it replaced with a special automail arm.
Lan Fan is a member of the Yao Clan from the land of Xing. She was raised by her grandfather Fu. She was trained in martial arts, stealth, and weapons as a vassal to Ling Yao, the twelfth prince of Xing. Conflict between the other descendants on who would replace the emperor was common, and each were trying to court his favor. Ling had heard of the unusual alchemy of the land of Amestris and hoped to find a key to immortality to strengthen his clan's position with the emperor. Ran Fan traveled with her grandfather to guard Ling as he traveled across the great desert.
The character Lan Fan is a major supporting character of the series Fullmetal Alchemist that was created by Hiromu Arakawa. The series first began serialization in Square Enix's Monthly Shonen Gangan in August 2001.
Her first appearance was in Fullmetal Alchemist Volume 8 CH. 32 "Emissary From the East", which was originally published on Jul. 22, 2004; and her first anime appearance was in the second anime based upon Arakawa's work Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood - Episode 15 "The Envoy From the East". Her character in the Japanese series is voiced by Nana Mizuki, and the U.S. dub produced by FUNimation is done by Trina Nishimura.
The name Lan Fan means cold rice in Cantonese/Chinese.
Lan Fan and her grandfather, Fu, shadowed the young master Ling as he traveled to Rush Valley in southern Amestris. He collapsed and was discovered by a young blond alchemist named Edward Elric and his armored brother Alphonse. She watched as Ling talked to the young boys about alchestry and the Philosopher's Stone. They feigned ignorance, but Ling doubted that claim and gave Lan Fan and Fu the signal to detain them. The boys struggled and went into battle. Edward and Lan Fan fought, and he was so talented in alchemy that he didn't even need a transmutation circle. She lost her head each time Edward mocked Ling, and he got through her guard. She turned the tables on him after he shattered her mask. She dropped a bomb, and worried she went overboard when all she saw in the rubble was his automail arm. After lifting it from the debris, the arm was no longer attached to his body, and it triggered a trap that tied her up. Ling arrived soon after, and Alphonse had captured Fu, as well. Once distracted, they were able to escape
They gathered to a workplace of a friend of the Elrics to wait. Ling told them how he was a prince and his motives for coming to Amestris, and she couldn't help but throw a kunai after Edward mocked the young lord more. She then watched as Edward's friend, Winry, returned then beat him repeatedly for damaging his automail arm. While listening in, Ling arraigned for them to follow Ed and Al to Central City. They rode on the top of the train for the trip, and Ling went missing as soon as they arrived in Central. Edward, Al, and Winry went off on their own, and Lan Fan and Fu searched desperately for Ling. She was worried sick he had collapsed again.