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ZEITGEIST First Blade of Srasama vs. Rites of the Obscurati

I was hoping someone could clarify a rule for me or how I should rule a particular interaction.
My players are starting to wrap up Chapter 4: Always on time. They are wrapping up Crypta Hereticarum and are on their way to fight Gene and meet Ashima-Shimtu. However, recently my players acquired the item: First Blade of Srasama. One of the abilities is:

"The bonded wielder knows the status and location of all women within one mile,and if she has met them before, she also knows their identities. If this power is everused to harm innocents, the wielder immolates, taking 5d6 fire damage each rounduntil the flames are extinguished (DC 15 Reflex save as a full-round action). The swordteleports away and will never serve her again."
(I am assuming this is a divination effect)

I was wondering how this ability interacts with Rites of the Obscurati:
From Chapter 7: Schism
All cell leaders and high-ranking officers of the Obscurati have the following special quality:

Rites of the Obscurati (Su) The rites of the Obscurati magically separate a person’s normal identity from their role as an officer of the conspiracy.Magic that attempts to determine the identity of an Obscurati cell leaderfails outright, as if such a person did not exist. Likewise, attempts todetermine whether a given person is affiliated with the Obscurati will fail. Divinations that do not relate to his involvement with the conspiracycan function, but have a chance of yielding useless, innocuous results.Whenever a character attempts to use magic to divine an Obscuratiofficer’s location, thoughts, status, or the like, that character must make anSpellcraft check (DC 34). If he fails, the magic reports something deceptive, usually in a way to lessen suspicions. Key to the rites is the ring of office: a ring of varying composition whichmust have inscribed on the inside a three word phrase. The first twowords of that phrase must have the initials O.B. The third word can beanything, but traditionally the number of letters determines how manytiers from the top the officer is. The protections these rites grant do not function if the officer doesnot wear his ring, nor if the diviner knows the words inscribed within hisring. That said, some Obscurati officers are powerful enough to shieldthemselves without requiring these rites.

My players have already met Lya Jierre (Chapter 1: Axis Island) and Bree (Chapter 4: Always on Time), so this sword could be used to find their location. However, both of them have Obscurati Rings, which means they are protected by the Rites of the Obscurati.

A few questions:
First, can the First Sword of Srasama be used to find the location of Bree and Lya Jierre?

If so, does the character use the caster level of the Sword (CL 20) or their own Spellcraft checks to overcome the DC?

Lastly, are Bree and Lya Jierre "innocent"?
I have taken a more machiavellian approach of the end justifies the means (so probably not completely innocent), but they believe they are trying to save the world.

Any advice on how to rule this would be greatly appreciated!

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Andrew Moreton

First I would say finding them is a matter of why the pc's are searching. If they are looking doe Lya Jierre their friend and she is not involved in sinister Ob actions at that moment then yes it finds them. If the players are looking for them because they are Ob no it is blocked, likewise if they are in a secret Ob facility no chance of finding them.
Neither can really be defined as innocent both are involved in covert operations, killing people for the greater good and general machievellian machinations.

The CL of the item makes no difference you can decide an artefact trumps the Ob's protective rituals but I doubt it , particularly as the source of their protection is linked to Ssrama's death I may rule it is even more effective vs this item. If the artifact nature does not trump the ritual it's a spellcraft check so power (CL) is not important it is down to skill and the item is not sentient and has no skill of its own. So at this point I doubt the pc's can touch the ritual unless they have skill focus or racial bonus they won't hit +14 until at least level 6 and won't hit a 50/50 chance until lvl 12-14 depending on their int scores that ritual is meant to be good it has protected the Ob for generations

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