I guess he is!
No, wait, it's the Unguessable Thing that belongs to Alton. Does anything about this cover make you want to read it? Okay, maybe the birds are robot birds . . . and the stone, it could be sentient, but how the hell does somethng like that evolve? What does a rock need an eye for? Oh, a predator approaches, I'd better get away! Oh wait.
An exploratory vessel of The Empire, Alpha Tauri, lands on an uncharted habitable world. Apart from vegetation, the planet seems empty of life apart from one species of bird and one species of rodent. The T-man (telepath), Keim, becomes increasingly nervous as he is hearing a constant roar of mental static.
This is because a castaway is already on the planet. Its name is Uli, a virtually immortal being from the edge of the galaxy, and the last survivor of nine who set out to escape an apocalypse in their region of space.
Uli – a small egg shaped beast with an eye at one end – has the power to project portions of his being into other creatures, such as the birds and the rodents. His plan is to infect the crew one by one, and to use the ship to take him back to the Empire of the humans where he can begin his conquest of the galaxy.
But of course.