She says, "Hello to you, too, sphere hunters. I am Marnela of the Cactuar Nation. It does not surprise me that you are startled." (By the way, she's smiling.)Benzo, Marnela's interpreter.
Marnela is a Cactuar and the leader of the Cactuar Nation in Final Fantasy X-2. She is a sentient cactus who communicates with the Gullwings through an Al Bhed child named Benzo to protect the nation from Angra Mainyu. Her name in the Cactuar language means "Grandma".
Marnela uses a generic cactus model from the field. She is a taller-than-human plant growing on the desert, rooted rather than mobile like her younger kin. Marnela is a green cactus with red thorns. Though not shown having a mouth, Marnela can vocalize and speaks in a language only understood by one human in the world.
Marnela is the wise and matronly leader of her people. Though the cacti and the humans do not usually interact, when her nation falls under threat Marnela does not hesitate seeking help from the people who also visit the Bikanel Desert.
Nhadala, leader of the Al Bhed excavation camp, asks the Gullwings to represent their camp with the help of their Cactuar interpreter, Benzo. Marnela had wished to meet with the camp, but Nhadala and her team are too busy and ask the Gullwings to meet her in their stead.
When Yuna and the team arrive, they are surprised to learn Marnela is a giant cactus. Marnela explains through Benzo that when a Cactuar matures, they root deep into the ground and become cacti. The Cactuar Nation she leads have watched over the desert "since the dawn of time". She tells of a fiend once sealed by her ancestors that has recently awakened, and asks the Gullwings to find the Ten Gatekeepers that can summon the Great Haboob, a magical barrier, against the impending attack.
Fiends begin to appear around the desert, and encroach into Cactuar Nation. When they began their invasion the Gullwings help Marnela protect the area. Marnela shocks them by firing laser beams towards the fiends; she is able to fend them off for the Gullwings giving them extra time to find the Gatekeepers, but uses all of her strength and dies. At the end of the quest Benzo reveals that a cactus sprout had appeared in the place where Marnela was rooted, ready to grow as a new Marnela.