Second story submitted to 2000AD competition in December 09. Click Read More for the conclusion... Enjoy :-)
Dredd approaches the machine, checking up and down the street. All quiet.
He inserts his credits. The screen in front of him flickers for a moment before a beautiful woman’s face appears.
“Good day!” the machine greets him huskily. “I am here to fulfil your needs. Please answer the following questions. Name?”
Dredd punches at the screen. The woman on screen smiles in encouragement.
He punches again.
“What four things are you never without?”
He thinks and types – helmet, Lawgiver, Lawmaster – it gets tricky after three. Ha! I am never without the law!
“Thank you. Please wait while we cater to your specific requirements.” She smiles again and – was that a wink?
Dredd taps his feet nervously, checking the street again. If he is caught here, in this dingy alley, using this machine for… for… these purposes…
“We are ready for you now, Mr Dredd.”
With a deep breath and a growing frisson of excitement, he hits the screen again to continue.
The woman fades out and in fades an image of an old man with a white beard. He speaks with a retro Austrian accent.
“Meester Dredd. Vot you are about to experience may cause you concern. If at any time you vish the broadcast to halt, please tap ze screen.
“From vot you have told me, I can only say zat you have some issues vith the sex. Ze tools of your trade – your Lawgiver, your Lawmaster – zey are tools indeed. Large veapons and fast vehicles are symbols of ze penis – you are obsessed vit your penis and zose of others around you.
“I belief zis stems from your father. He voss also a man of ze law, voss he not? He had power over life and death – it is hard, is it not, to follow him. You vish to kill your father, a vish zat you cannot fulfil. Zis is why you have feelings of sexual inadequacy.
“You also, of course, vish to sleep vith your mother. But you have no mother. Zis is why you vish to have sex vith ze women in your life but you do nothing. You create zis distance consciously, hiding behind your mask. And yet ze very mask you wear, zis helmet, is it not a clear symbol of ze vagina? Are you not, scared and alone, attempting to recreate ze security of your absent mother’s womb? You vish simultaneously to return to ze womb, to have sex vith your mother and to kill her. None of zese things can you do. Zis is also why you have feelings of sexual inadequacy.
“In summary: you vish to kill your parents and to have sex vith them both too. You confuse zese desires for sex and death; whilst zis makes you a good judge, you find it hard to have meaningful relationships.
“Sank you for consulting vith Sigmund F-Droid! Have a nice day!”
Dredd stares aghast at the now silent machine. “Drokk, I only wanted something to eat.”