^ ha. one of our old cats, a calico, did the same sort of stuff. she would treat her little toy furry mouse like the kitten she never had (poor thing) and bring it to us at night. we called it 'her baby.' she also loved the fireplace, but feared it also when it went 'crack!' throwing a spark her way.
she's actually there, in the dark, staring into the fire -- hard to see on my smartphone.