Regent Cid hired Tantalus to save Garnet
Regent Cid of Lindblum, Garnet’s uncle, got worried about Queen Brahne’s greed and lust for power. Regent Cid hired Tantalus to kidnap princess Garnet and take her away from her evil mother Brahne. Princess Garnet was also unhappy in the castle and welcomed the kidnapping attempt.
Vivi discovered he was manufactured
As the part reached the village of Dali they discovered that Black Mages were actually manufactured from mist then exported to Alexandria so that Queen Brahne uses them for war to conquer other nations. The party started to realize that Queen Brahne might be evil.
Brahne attacked Burmecia and Clerya
Queen Brahne attacked Burmecia then shortly used the eidolons, summoned magic extracted from Garnet’s body, to destroy Clerya completely. The party became sure that Brahne is evil and must be stopped. Garnet was in shock to see her own mother doing so.
Garnet turned out to be from Madain Sari
Shortly, the party arrived to Madain Sari, a village on another continent, and discovered that Garnet isn’t Brahne’s daughter but is a summoner from Madain Sari, the village of summoners. Garnet’s real mother escaped a storm on a boat long ago but died after delivering her to safety. (See Why many people like Final Fantasy 9?)
The purpose of the mist
When the party arrived to Lifa tree they realized that the mist is a bi-product of the tree and that the main purpose of the tree is to prevent the souls of Gaia, the planet they live on, from returning back to the crystal,which is the source of their life, after death.
Kuja kills Queen Brahne
The party found queen Brahne with her army coming near the Lifa tree. Queen Brahne summoned Bahamut to kill Kuja, who turned against her, but he summoned a ship called the invincible which managed to enslave Bahamut and control it. Bahamut then attacked Brahne’s army and she died. (See How To Win Final Fantasy 9 Card Game)
Garland destroyed Alexandria
Kuja attacked Alexandria after Garnet became the Queen but both Garnet and Eiko summoned Alexander and temporarily protected the city. Shortly, an old man called Garland appeared, controlling the invincible and destroyed Alexandria.
Kuja decided to kill Garland
Kuja fooled the black mages to follow him by telling them he can expand their very short life span. Kuja decided to collect enough power to kill Garland. He decided to extract Eidolons from Eiko but he failed. After that he realized he has enough power to do it without Eidolons.
The party went to Terra
The party knew that Kuja is from Terra, a different planet, after they talked to Cid’s wife who was captured by Kuja. They managed to reach Terra only to discover that it’s a dying planet that thrives by absorbing other planets. Garnet’s plans, who is from Terra,was to assimilate Gaia to save Terra.
Zidane turned out to be from Terra
Zidane realized that he and Kuja were created by Garland as soldiers to fulfill his plans of destroying Gaia to save Terra. Garland also created many beings like Zidane and called vessels to absorb the souls of the people of Gaia when the right time comes.
Why Garland wants to take out Gaia
The Crystal of Terra, which is the source of life of the planet, was weakening. The only way to save Terra was to absorb another planet.
Kuja destroyed Terra
When Garland told Kuja that his life span is limited as well he went into rage and decided to destroy everything. He started with Terra.
The happy ending
Garland was defeated then Kuja was killed. The party returned, Vivi died, Zidane married Garnet and the planet lived in peace.
Final Fantasy IX Story Summary
What happened in Final Fantasy IX? History of Final Fantasy IX: Story | Final Fantasy IX Story Summary