I'd just turned seventeen, only a few months ago. I was at home with my mother and sister who I lived with at the time, both of them sleeping and leaving me to deal with my boredom by myself.
The house we were living in at the time was tiny as hell. It only had two bedrooms, and was all on one floor. But, luckily for us, it was a really wooded area that we lived in. It was super difficult just to 'find'. It didn't face any streets and had three turns on a driveway strip just to get to the house.
No way would anyone just stumble across it, you had to actively search for our home.
It was about one in the morning and I was messing around on the computer and watching TV, procrastinating from sleeping. There was no good reason for me to not go to bed just yet, but I was relaxed and totally chill with staying up for a few more hours. Since my mum had just gone to bed about an hour before, I hadn't begun to lock up the house for the night, aka all of our windows were still open, and most importantly, our living room windows.
We had a bay window, and I hated it. This window was freaking huge. Probably about 8 feet long and 6 feet tall. It even has smaller windows on the sides of it so you can open those and get a good breeze. It takes up most of the wall, and during the day it's great. We could look outside our window and we're surrounded by trees and the sunlight in our lawn. But at night time? When you look out, all you can see is darkness. Not good for a paranoid teenager.
I was sitting on the couch, which is right next to the window, when I heard something outside start shifting and dragging. We had wild animals roam across our lawns all the time at nighttime, and bunnies were abundant, so I wasn't too worried. But after about five minutes of this continual noise, I began to get a little worried. I tried to glance out, but all I could see was darkness. Listening closer, I froze; The sound was footfalls. There was someone outside.
For a moment, I just sat there, not sure what to do. Sometimes my older brother, who worked about five minutes away from our house, would stop by when he got off early in the morning and pop out when I opened the front door to see what was making noise. But this seemed different, I felt really vulnerable. The feeling of being watched was really heavy and made my blood run freezing cold.
Sliding off of my couch, I walked over to my front door, which wasn't locked. Seeing as it was such a small place, the front door led directly into our living room, and was less than six feet of wall space away from those huge windows.
As quietly as I could, I locked the door and turned on the porch light, hoping that I was just wrong and I'd see an animal scamper away.
I was dead wrong. The moment I turned on the light, the porch light had lit up the front lawn, revealing the silhouette of an adult man, standing directly in front of my front door. I've never been so fucking terrified in my entire life, so the first thing I did was sprint back to my kitchen, watching the front door and window carefully and grabbing the biggest knife I could find, which was longer than my forearm.
I continued to keep my eyes looking out at it as I walked sideways, making my way to where my mum and little sister were sleeping. I looked away for a split second to get the door unlocked to their room, and when I looked back up I nearly started crying.
The guy was probably over 40, dressed completely in black and had his face pressed up against my window. We made eye contact and kept it, and by then my brain just didn't seem to be working. This guy had been pacing back and forth in front of my house for at least five minutes, and now was just looking at me. If he'd wanted, he could have hit out my screen and gotten in.
Panicking, I grabbed the door handle and threw the door open as hard as I could, turning and sprinting into the room. I'd woken my mum up when I'd slammed the door open, but she didn't really register there was danger until she saw me waving a knife around and yelling.
By the time she came out into our living room, he was gone. We called the police. They checked out the area and the guy wasn't anywhere in sight, but apparently there was a long rut in the ground out in our lawn from where he was pacing back and forth. Right in front of those windows. It wasn't too far out, but if I'd looked out at any time, he could have seen me and I never aw him. That thought still freaks me out to this day.
They haven't had any more cases of him window peaking since, but I have no idea what he would have done if he'd actually gotten into the house. Still, my mums first course of action was to go out and get me mace, in case any more incidences like it happen again.
Point being, from this point on, windows and doors get shut and locked the moment the sun goes down, no exceptions.