Ja’far frowned. “You have a plan to eliminate Kou influence here, if you can avoid a war?”
“I’m… not sure,” Alibaba admitted. “I’ve got one that’ll deal with the expense, but not the problem.”
“The expense?” Morgiana frowned.
“If enough money can solve it,” Alibaba started.
“It’s not a problem, it’s an expense,” Ja’far finished, gray eyes sober. “You did learn from Rashid.”
Color bloomed in Alibaba’s cheeks. “Getting Balbadd out of the debt hole – that’s the expense. We’re working on it.”
“By devaluing the Fan,” Ja’far nodded.
Leaning back in his chair, Jahan chuckled. “Ah, if only it were that simple!”
White brows rose. “Now I am interested,” Ja’far murmured. “What are you up to?”
“First, we got trade going again,” Alibaba obliged. “That got funds and metals moving. And knocked the value of the Fan down to pretty much zero… in Balbadd.”
“Oh,” Ja’far breathed. “Oh, that is evil. I like you.” He nodded to himself, short and sharp. “And the Fog Troupe has been robbing noble houses. Stealing everything not nailed down. Including the Fan.”
“Um….” Lost, Aladdin looked at Morgiana. Who shrugged, equally confused. “What does that mean, you just made it worth less in Balbadd…?”
Oh. Oh wow, if what he thought was right, that really was evil. “You mean, the Fan’s still worth something in the Empire, right?” Aladdin said, feeling his way through what seemed like an awful complicated mess. “So… you’re making it so the people here don’t want the Fan, they’re not using it. And then you’re stealing it from the nobles, so… you can buy back what Abhmad sold?”