I told her not to leave me alone because they would get me. She didn't listen. I woke up in the middle of the night to the gentle tinkling on the aluminum roof. The house was cold. It seeped into my skin and made my bones ache. I climbed out of my bed and stepped into the hallway. My mother usually left the stove light on in the kitchen but the house was bathed in shadows. They made pictures on the walls. I didn't like the shadows. I didn't like the darkness. I called out her name, but she didn't answer. My heart began to race. Why wasn't she answering? She always answered.

The only light came from the glow of the time on the microwave. I called out her name again. She wasn't there. I was too scared to go to her room. She always said I was too scared.

The roof was noisy. The rain made music on the aluminum. Sometimes during winter snow would come barreling down the sides of the house like an avalanche. In the fall leaves, branches and acorns would tap and thump agaisnt it. I was nine years old and it still scared me. Sometimes she would hold me in her arms and rock me until the sounds stopped.

I could still hear them tapping against the roof. I saw their shadows sometimes. I saw them moving around outside the windows, hiding behind trees and quietly slipping out of the yard before she could catch them. I knew someday they would come for me.

I was too scared to look outside in case they were out there, but I needed to know if she was home. Maybe she was just sleeping. Maybe she wasn't home from work. I parted the curtains beside the window. My heart was still pounding but the front yard appeared empty and my mother's car was parked along the curb. I could see the light on. I sighed to myself. I was safe. She was home after all. But she never came in. I waited and she never came.

I left my house and stepped off of the porch. Maybe she fell asleep again. She worked so late. The leaves crunched on the grass as I walked. Then the light went off. The car door closed. I froze in panic. It didn't dawn on me at first. The ground wasn't wet. I didn't hear the rain after all. It was them. The shadow people.

I slowly turned around toward my darkened house. It seemed even scarier from the outside. Then I saw movement on the roof. The dark humanoid shadows were looking down at me. I screamed and ran for the door but one of them dropped down onto the porch. I acted on instinct and ran toward the back, but they stood waiting for me at the door. It was people with no skin.

...

I wrote two stories for Mibba's Halloween Contest. I think I'm allowed to have two stories. I don't remember. If I am, yay! If not then I'll have to choose between this one and The Widow. For the contest I like this one best because I have a 500 word limit and I had to cut a lot out of The Widow. But I love the Widow because it's my own urban legend and I love urban legends.

Anyway my husband had this recurring dream when he was a kid about these skinless people on his roof. So when I read The Widow to him he told me to write about his skin people. And I did. I hope it's creepy enough. I've never done a contest before. :)