Once the choral coos of the song's introduction begin, Clay's (Dylan Minnette) face falls. He stumbles away from the jubilant group photo, and walks into the middle of the dance floor. This song takes him back to another time, another dance floor — a moment he's spent the last season (and five months) processing. The song should sound as familiar to us as it does to Clay: "The Night We Met" played as Hannah (Katherine Langford) and Clay danced.
As we all know, certain songs are vehicles for distinct moments in our lives. For Clay, "The Night We Met" is a time machine to him and Hannah at their happiest. Tony (Christian Navarro) knows this, and so once "The Night We Met" starts playing, he runs towards his friend. By that point, Clay is walking toward the middle of the dance floor like he's a shell of himself.
The lyrics of "The Night We Met" adhere perfectly to the scene's sentiment. As the chorus goes, "I had all and then most of you / Some and now none of you / Take me back to the night we met / I don't know what I'm supposed to do / Haunted by the ghost of you / Oh, take me back to the night we met." This is the inner landscape of Clay's mind. He had "some and now none" of Hannah Baker. Now he's "haunted by the ghost" of Hannah Baker. By hearing this song, Clay is taken "back to the night [they] met." The song is a reminder for Clay – and for the viewers — about how much has changed since he first heard it.
Clay doesn't have to experience this moment alone. The ordeal of Hannah's trial has only cemented his friendships. Gradually, he's joined by Tony, Jessica (Alisha Boe), Zach (Ross Butler), and Ryan (Tommy Dorfman), the other Liberty High students who have survived the show's many traumas alongside him. As the rest of the couples slow dance, this mass of friends dances together in the centre. The aftermath of Hannah's death has brought them all closer together. This is a moment of shared remembrance, sure — but it's also proof that they've got each other.
This scene is tinged with an aura of dread and dramatic irony. We know what the swaying friends at the centre of the circle do not: Tyler (Devin Druid) is on his way to the school gym in a car loaded with guns and ammunition. He intends to perpetrate a massacre. For every joy in 13 Reasons Why, a dramatic turn is just around the corner.