What should I do, please, y'all? Should I bite the bullet and ask my friend out or let her find a guy her own age?

I met this amazing girl at a job interview about this time, last year- (neither of us got the job, just in case you're wondering), but a beautiful friendship came out of it, and we've been friends ever since that day- (meeting up regularly for drinks and whatnot!) We've become so close, as friends,... show more I met this amazing girl at a job interview about this time, last year- (neither of us got the job, just in case you're wondering), but a beautiful friendship came out of it, and we've been friends ever since that day- (meeting up regularly for drinks and whatnot!) We've become so close, as friends, it's unreal. Anyway, my friend's said that she's single and that she's looking for a new guy to date. I asked her to describe her ideal bloke, to which, she replied: "Pretty close to how you are, actually, babe!" I really like my friend a lot and I seriously want to ask her to be my girl. The thing that bothers me is that she's 19 and I'm 40, and I'm terrified that it's going to scare her, if I ask her out, and that she's going to think that I'm a creepy old bastard, and bang, just like that, that's the end of our bloody friendship! I really don't want that to happen. I don't want to freak her out, but I'll be honest: I'll be bloody gutted if she starts dating some other guy. What would you guys do in my shoes?
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