Re: Problem with comfort and kino escalation.
A little trick I like to do to escalate is to have her be the one to physically initiate it. It's a compliance test of sorts. Instead of me grabbing her hand, I tell her to hold mine. Here's a little breakdown:
Verbally, I'm going 100%. I want her to hold my hand and I make that clear. All she has to do is comply.
Physically, she's going 90, I'm going 10. She's the one that does the reaching to hold your hand.
Obviously, you're good to further escalate from here. If you're uncomfortable about being too sexual/forward, squeeze her hand a couple of times and see if she squeezes back. Gets a little game going where you both end up getting accustomed to touching one another. From here, escalate by holding her other hand and squeezing it, too. Say she hurt you and demand a hug. You get the idea.
I think you're afraid of escalating because you're unsure of what will happen. You're worried about rejection. IOI's are emphasized for a reason - you see them, you move forward appropriately. You can play it safe with my method for now, though.
Always leave her better than you found her.