Horses clop into the courtyard. You and Helena go out to see the King, Tulip, and a few dozen horsemen filing out the gate. Helena yells, "Good hunting!" A few minutes later, Hugh and Louis ride up. "We drank Frederic under the table and spied on the Master of Horse. He arranged the horses for the King, and now he's sending (DM rolls 1d4: 4!) four fast riders to warn the Duke. They headed for the east gate."
To the east gate! A sleep spell will halt them in their tracks!
#1 and send Hugh and Louis ahead to delay them and have the gate shut.
"We strike tonight," you say. Leander says, "Good! See that you have guards in the theater: the Duke's men will be mad enough to murder by act 2. And bring another 2950 gold." You return to Helena and tell her that you've arranged some propaganda. Helena asks, "How many troops will you need for the theater? I have 30 spellswords and was planning to use them all for arrests."
Let's use all 30 for the theatre, in case things get ugly. Be on hand with Mandra to help out.
how many exits are there to the theatre? a small group inside with us
Split them; 20 for the theatre to protect the actors, and 10 to start the groundwork for arresting nobles. If we can quietly grab a few early, so be it.
We don't care about the rabble, it's the nobles we need to be certain are neutralized. Send most with Helena, keep 5 or so with us.