This question does have an answer, however, the courage required, is, to each his own. Oftentimes, men find the object of their desire, fearsome. What you need to understand is, the girl you like is not your real fear. Your real fear is fear of rejection, fear of losing, and fear of commitment. All this things put together, make you stab your desires and suppress your wants. However, is life really lived, if you haven't tried to get what you covet? So, don't just give up yet. Here's some advice that you can use.
Take a Decision
You have known her since time immemorial. You partied together, you confide in her, and you shared some of the best moments together. Naturally, there's a soft corner for her in your heart. You look out for her every time you are together, check on her, hear her out, go out of your ways to do things to her, and grab every opportunity that you get to spend time with her. Well, these are sure sings that you are in love and you need to make a move, before you enter the 'best friend' category. To make the next move, you need to take a firm decision. Get it straight, that you want to make her yours, and share every moment together. Dating her is the next thing on your mind.
Before you drop the bomb, you need to give her some subtle hints. Popping the question, in a random way, can shock or upset her. Subtle hints is, flirting. Put all the flirting tips and tricks that you've ever known to good use now. There are millions of flirting lines for men that can help you a great deal to do your groundwork. If she responds to your flirting, then she too is romantically inclined towards you.
Be original in whatever that you are going to do to, while asking a girl out. The only suggestion you can consider is, women are through romantic. So, try to make this moment as romantic, secluded, and private as possible. We women are love creativity and romance more than just an opulent show around it. Find the right moment, get close enough, and without wasting a single second, just ask her to be your girlfriend.
Asking a girl out with confidence, shows how stable you are in your thoughts and action. It gives an image of a person, who can take care of himself and the partner too. Make an eye contact and maintain it. Hold her hand firmly in yours, move an inch closer to her and ask the question with a shadow of a doubt. And she sure won't say no for an answer!