Characters / Final Fantasy VII

Aerith Gainsborough

Aerith Gainsborough

Final Fantasy VII

Main Protagonist

Voice Actor: N/A
Age: 22

Aerith Gainsborough is originally seen briefly in the opening cutscene of Final Fantasy VII and encounters Cloud for the first time when she offers to sell him a flower. Their exchange is brief though, as Cloud is in a rush to escape ShinRa forces at the time.

It isn't long until they meet again though, as he falls through the roof of her Church and is saved by the flowers that she has been growing. Aerith convinces Cloud to be her bodyguard by saying that she will take him on a date and Cloud agrees just in time, as they're attacked by Reno. However, they both manage to escape and head for Aerith' home in Sector 5.

Home Sweet Home

When they arrive at Aerith' house they are greated by Elmyra Gainsborough, who we find out is Aerith' adopted mother. Elmyra explains about how she found Aerith and her dying mother (Ifalna) at the train station, when she was waiting for her husband to return home from war. Elmyra promised Ifalna that she would take care of Aerith.

Assuming that Elmrya has told Cloud to leave her alone, Aerith sets off the next morning ahead of Cloud and manages to intercept him before he reaches Sector 6. They head off together in the direction of Sector 7 only to see Tifa being taken towards the Wall Market.

Aerith Gets Taken By Tseng

You Look Cute In A Dress

Cloud and Aerith infiltrate Don Corneo's mansion after they spend a fair amount of time trying to make Cloud look like a pretty girl. Aerith seems to have quite a lot of fun, especially in the dress shop. They meet up with Tifa inside and extract information from Don Corneo, who reveals ShinRa's plans for Sector 7.

Aerith decides to split from Cloud and goes to make sure Marlene Wallance is safe. She takes Marlene to her mother, Elmyra, so that she can look after her, but shortly after she does so, is captured by Tseng. Tseng then goes to collect Reno from the Sector 7 support and the group see that Aerith has been captured.

The Last Remaining Ancient

After being captured by The Turks, Aerith is handed over to Professor Hojo so that he can conduct experiments on her. It is here that we find out that Aerith is a Cetra (Ancient) and that she is the last of her kind alive. Hojo decides that to prolong the lifespan of her species, she should mate with Red XIII, who is also the last of his species.

Cloud and the others make a daring raid on the ShinRa tower and ultimately end up rescuing Aerith just as Hojo's experiments were about to get started. Following their escape from the ShinRa building, Aerith decides that she will stay with Cloud in order to help them stop Sephiroth.

You Remind Me Of Someone

When the party ventures to Gongaga, we learn a bit more about Aerith' past. Upon entering a hut, two elderly people ask Cloud if he knew someone in SOLDIER called Zack who left to join SOLDIER seven years about. Cloud cannot recall ever knowing anyone called Zack, as if he has completely forgotten they were ever friends.

However, upon hearing the name, Aerith comments that her first love was called Zack, but she hasn't seen him or had any contact with him recently.

Aerith Cloud Gold Saucer Date

I'll Take You On One Date

When the group arrive in search of the Keystone at the Gold Saucer, Aerith and Cloud get given free rooms for the night courtesy of Cait Sith. Aerith decides that this is a perfect opportunity to take Cloud on the date she promised him for his service as her bodyguard.

Aerith decides to take Cloud to the Event Square so they can take part in a play where Cloud plays the hero "Alfred" and Aerith plays "Princess Rosa". Then she decides to take Cloud on the Gondola for a bit of sight seeing and soul searching.

Near the end of the sequence, Aerith talks about Zack for the first time. She remarks that Cloud and Zack are the same in the way the look ant gesture, but there is something different about Cloud. She suggests that he isn't being himself and she wants to get to know the real Cloud.

On the way back from the Gondola, they bump into Cait Sith who is stealing the Keystone! They chase him, but unfortunately he hands it over to Tseng before they can catch him.

Aerith Black Materia

Learning More About Her Heritage

In the Temple of the Ancients, Aerith finds memories of the previous Ancients who inhabited the planet. She cannot understand what the teachings mean though until they arrive at the final chamber. Here she discovers that the temple itself is the Black Materia and whoever takes it will be crushed inside the temple.

Following Cait Sith's sacrifice to obtain the Black Materia, Cloud unwillingly hands it to Sephiroth. Unable to control himself anymore, Cloud attacks Aerith and then passes out through mental fatigue.

In the following dream that Cloud has, Aerith tells him that she will deal with Sephiroth on her own and that he shouldn't worry. However, she is interrupted by Sephiroth telling Cloud that Aerith must be stopped.

Sacrifice For The Greater Good

When Aerith was in the Temple of the Ancients, she discovered what it was that her mother had given her when she was a child. It wasn't just an heirloom, it was the Holy Materia. She heads to the City of the Ancients on her own to begin summoning Holy in order to prevent Meteor.

Aerith Death Sequence Cloud and the rest of the group catch up with her there and Cloud approaches her. He briefly loses control of his body again, but he manages to resist Sephiroth's mind-control this time. However, he manages too late, as Sephiroth swoops down from the sky and kills Aerith.

As Sephiroth strikes through Aerith, a small pearl of white materia (Holy) falls from her hair and sinks into the nearby lake after bouncing down all the nearby steps. When Sephiroth has left, Cloud mourns the loss of Aerith and gently places her body into the same pool of water in the centre of the City of the Ancients allowing it to drift into the depths.

The Truth About Aerith' Past

After Aerith has past away, the group travel to the Icicle Inn. It is here that they learn about Aerith' parents - Professor Gast and Ifalna. They originally met when Gast was researching the Ancients for ShinRa, but they grew closer and closer. After they fled from ShinRa, they had a daughter, who they decided to name Aerith. This means that Aerith' real name is Aerith Gast.

They ran from ShinRa for many years, but Hojo kept catching up with them. He killed Professor Gast and then continued to hunt down Ifalna and Aerith, which also ended in the death of Ifalna. Aerith remembers little of her parents though, as she was so young at the time.

Aerith' Plan Is Complete

Following the demise of Sephiroth, his hold over Holy diminishes. Holy is no longer restricted by his power and moves to counter-act the attacking force of Meteor. However, Holy alone is not strong enough to detain the awesome power that Meteor possesses.

Just as Holy appears to be failing, the Lifesteam appears to come to its aid. She had given her life so that Holy could work in combination with the planet to defeat Meteor.

Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII

Supporting Cast

Voice Actor: Andrea Bowen
Age: 15-22

Aerith is first encountered in Crisis Core thanks to a fairly familiar scene. After fighting some ShinRa robots that had gone out of control, and chasing Hollander, Zack ends up falling from the upper-realm through Aerith's church room onto her flowerbed.

Aerith Points To The Sky


Zack awakes to hear Aerith saying "Hellooo" and he is quite taken aback by her. They seem to instantly strike up a rapport, although Aerith clearly enjoys teasing Zack's over-confidence.

After hearing about Aerith's flowers and being warned not to step on them, Zack then says his famous business line of "Midgar full of flowers, wallet full of money". Ironically, when he is making his way back to the ShinRa HQ, he gets his wallet stolen and Aerith has to help him get it back.

Building The Flower Wagon

The next time Zack visits Aerith, he manages to bring along one of ShinRa's new weapons, which is trying to destroy him. However, he is saved by an Angeal Copy that is looking after Aerith.

After being convinced she is safe, Zack goes off to collect parts for the flower wagon that he plans to build. After it's finished, they take it for a test run, but it doesn't prove very successful. Tseng then informs Zack he has another mission, which prompts Zack to ask Tseng to look after Aerith while he is gone.

I've Sent 88 Letters Already

Following Zack's placement in Nibelheim, Aerith struggles to get a good signal when attempting to contact Zack. She does have a brief call though, where she informs him that the flower business is picking up. He tells her he'll be back soon, but that's the last she ever hears from him.

In the four years that pass, Aerith sends Zack 89 letters; however, 88 of them are stuck with Tseng as she had no idea how to contact Zack. Her final letter explains how she is concerned and unsettled about having to let go of Zack.

Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children

Minor Character

Voice Actor: Mena Suvari
Age: N/A

Aerith appears in Advent Children usually as a vision of Cloud Strife's - acting as his spiritual guide throughout the film. She tells him to let go and that he shouldn't blame himself for her death, as she never thought it was his fault.

During their main spiritual reunion, Aerith appears in a meadow cheerfully teasing Cloud because of the way he always burdens himself with everything. However, she appreciates the suffering he has had to go through in his life and offers him words of support.

Aerith And Zack Vision

Assistance From Beyond The Grave

During the huge fight with Bahamut SIN, the party launch a huge offensive which sees Cloud being thrown exceedingly high in the air in an attempt to catch Bahamut. Aerith somehow appears as the last person to give him a boost before he is able to strike down Bahamut.

She also appears alongside Zack in the final scene of the film as a vision, where she again offers Cloud words of encouragement. It is then disclosed that the water in Aerith' church had mixed with the Lifesteam and created a cure for the Geostigma which had plagued the land.

Before Crisis: Final Fantasy VII

Minor Character

Voice Actor: N/A
Age: 17

In Before Crisis: Final Fantasy VII, Aerith appears as a young girl. She has a strong inner will and a large thirst for adventure, which is why she is discovered in the game by The Turks.

However, it isn't The Turks who apprehend her first, as Fuhito, the leader of AVALANCHE, makes it a priority that she is captured after he hears information that Aerith is the last of the Ancients. Following her apprehension, Fuhito makes Aerith an offer: they will protect her if she helps them to find the Promised Land, something which both they and ShinRa want to find, even though they don't necessarily know what it is.

Aerith refuses to help and turns down their offer, but forms a special bond with Elfé due to the Materia that is inside of her. Aerith' interaction with the Materia inside Elfé's body affects Fuhito and he allows her to leave.

Final Fantasy Tactics


Voice Actor: N/A
Age: N/A

Even though the other characters are summoned by a machine, Aerith appears to already be in the world of Ivalice she is working as a flower girl. It is while she is working that she meets up with Cloud Strife.

While Cloud is with her, some thugs threaten Aerith and demand that she pays back the money she owes them. Aerith begs for more time to get the money, but they don't want to listen and demand that she gives up selling flowers and starts selling herself instead.

Outraged by these statements, Cloud, who was a bystander before, steps in to save Aerith from the thugs, which allows her to escape with her life and her dignity.